Richard Schleicher

Richard Schleicher was a Cleveland Wrestling Champion as a teenager but his most revered accomplishments came as a long time volunteer and promoter of youth involvement in sports. He has been instrumental in teaching young athletes the fundamentals needed for participation in any sport. His volunteer service began while in his teens as a counselor at summer Y camp. Soon after high school Rich began to umpire Avon Lake Little League while commuting from Cleveland. At the age of twenty he initiated a youth football program in Avon Lake that began playing in the Cleveland Municipal League and later evolved in the St. Joseph’s CYO team. During his 16 year tenure as head of the St. Joseph program it grew to be the standard by which other county CYO teams were judged.

His impact on his athletes was most impressive. Coach Schleicher was credited with teaching youngsters the highest standards of sportsmanship, self worth, and confidence. Rich has coached hundreds of athletes, many of whom went on to compete in high school and college athletics. A hard working, disciplined, understanding man his devotion to athletes was second only to his family. Many of his athletes will remember his coaching motto: “Play to win, if you don’t win it is not the end of the world, if you’ve given it your best you’ve got nothing to be ashamed of.”

The Hall of Fame Committee was inundated with nominations from his past players all expressing the positive influence Rich was in their lives. It was a testimony of his influence on the young people he coached.

© Avon Lake Sports Hall Of Fame