NORWICH – Jack Jones was a model of integrity, discipline, and professionalism. The longtime athletics administrator and hall of fame basketball coach died early Tuesday morning, Feb. 28, after a long battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s Disease).
Teary-eyed former colleagues were on hand as Jones’ death was announced before Tuesday night’s sectional basketball games at Norwich High School in the gymnasium bearing Jones’ name.
Born in Taylor, Pa. and a graduate of Taylor High School, Jones moved into the Southern Tier in 1968 after graduating from East Stroudsburg State and Cortland State and working in the Liberty school district. Jones accepted a position at Sidney Central Schools where he taught physical education, while also coaching football, basketball, track and field, and tennis.
As the school’s varsity basketball coach, Jones developed a program that became a perennial power in Central New York. He guided the Warriors to eight straight Susquenango Association titles, four Section IV titles, three NYSPHSAA regional titles, and one New York State Class B title after the 1978-’79 season.
During his tenure, Sidney had winning streaks of 34 and 46 games, and Jones’ teams went 112-4 over his final 116 games. He was a four-time Susquenango Association coach of the year.
Jones, a 2004 Sidney Alumni Association Hall of Fame inductee, was also inducted into the New York State Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame in 2005 for his success at Sidney High School, and is a Section IV Athletics Hall of Fame member.