BASEBALL: Scott Folmar follows a legend as Chambersburg's new baseball coach
CHAMBERSBURG >> Here's a group of words you haven't seen together in type for many, many years: "the Chambersburg Trojans' new baseball coach."
It is possible now, after 51 years, for those words to have some relevance. They apply to Scott Folmar, who will be "the Chambersburg Trojans' new baseball coach" if he is approved by the school board next week.
Folmar will also be the guy who succeeds a legend.
When Bob Thomas resigned in August he had piled up a record of 833-279 during his incredible 51-year stint as the Trojan coach. Those years included three PIAA state championships, 11 District 3 titles and 22 league crowns, and – most remarkable of all – only one year with a losing record.
Folmar is certainly aware of his situation. In fact, having played under Thomas for four years, including the PIAA-winning season of 1999, he knows exactly what he's getting into.
"When the position became available, I definitely wanted to try for it," Folmar said. "The 'following the legend' stuff never entered my mind. The goal is to continue the success that's been here for the last 50 years. I know that's a huge goal, but we want to keep the tradition going."
CASHS athletic director Jeremy Flores said one of his goals in the hiring was to find somebody who would be able to keep consistency in the program.
"Scott is still pretty young, so we told him we expect him to coach for the next 50 years," Flores said.
We think he was kidding.
After his graduation, Folmar played for four years at the University of Pittsburgh. For the last seven years, Folmar has been the head coach at James Buchanan, compiling a record of 49-87.
Flores said, "He knows baseball; I think the record at JB doesn't reflect that. He comes from a very athletic family that understands coaching and what it takes to have a successful program. He's a Trojan alumni who played under coach Thomas, and he was a volunteer assistant one year when the team won states (2004).
"He knows the tradition here. With his experience, he has some great ideas."
Folmar's father Don was the AD at Chambersburg before Flores. His oldest brother Ryan is the head baseball coach at Oral Roberts University and brother Eric is the associate head baseball coach at Louisiana-Monroe under former Shippensburg coach Bruce Peddie. Another brother, Drew, is the offensive coordinator for football at Lehigh. Coaching, obviously, runs in the family.
"I haven't talked to my brothers about it too much yet," Folmar said, "but I know they're excited for me."
Two years ago, Chambersburg fell to a 10-11 record – its only losing season under Thomas – but rebounded to go 15-10 last year and qualify for the PIAA Tournament.
Folmar said, "I think a lot of things in the program have obviously been working, so there's no need to change them. But we'll be looking for things we can improve on, and I think just the energy we can bring might lead to a few changes."
Until he is approved, Folmar won't be involved in any baseball activities with the team. He may have a chance to work with some of the players for the final week of fall ball, and will get to know his players before workouts begin in January.
"I think at times, kids can get consumed by baseball," Folmar said. "They need to take a break from it – maybe just relax in November and December and just lift weights. Or play another sport.
"I always encourage guys to play other sports (Folmar also played football and wrestled in high school). It gives you different skill sets and you get ideas from different coaches. Plus, I think it's important to stay competitive, and I don't think something like fall ball makes up for that."
Competitiveness is a trait Folmar has. Flores also believes Folmar's personality, energy, passion and optimism will play a big role in having a successful program.
"I think Scott can take us to the next level," Flores said. "We want to get it back to that feeling that in order to win the Commonwealth Division, you'll have to go through Chambersburg to do it."