Joe Marino Wins Ronnie McManes Award

Senior defensive tackle Joe Marino (Delanco, N.J./Holy Cross High) has been chosen as the winner of the Ronnie McManes Award.

The prestigious award, which was presented to Marino at a ceremony on April 15, is given "to the football player who has risen above adversity to excel athletically and academically." Justin Flint won the inaugural award last year.

Marino returned to start for Catholic University in 1999 after surgery to repair damage to the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee. He was the Cardinals' eighth-leading tackler with 33 total stops (eight unassisted). He had four tackles behind the line of scrimmage and recovered one fumble. He anchored a line that finished 28th in the nation in rushing defense (97.9 ypg) and 27th in scoring defense (14.7 ppg).

In the Cardinals' 1999 regular-season finale at Bridgewater, Marino didn't realize that he tore the ACL again. Despite the re-injury, he played the following week at Western Maryland because he had rehabilitated the knee so well that the muscles held the joint in place. After another surgery this summer, he will coach the CUA defensive line in 2000.

Marino made a season-high seven tackles and recovered a fumble this past year in a 34-2 victory at Salisbury State. His career high of nine tackles came in a 14-9 win at Dickinson in 1998. Prior to his injury in game seven vs. FDU-Madison that year, he recorded 30 tackles, including 1½ for loss.

The 5-11, 235-pound Marino helped lead CUA to the 1999 Old Dominion Athletic Conference championship and its third consecutive appearance in the NCAA Division III playoffs. The team finished 9-2 overall and 6-0 in the ODAC. It was the Cardinals' first year in the ODAC since the 1980s and its first-ever league title.

Ronnie McManes helped to revive football at Catholic by becoming the school's first head football coach in 1965 after a 15-year hiatus. The team competed as a club sport that year and lost its only game, 28-0 to St. Peter's, at old Brookland Stadium.

McManes, who lives in Hyattsville, Md., previously coached football, baseball, basketball and track in Washington, D.C., for the No. 12 Metropolitan Police Boys Club. Among the more noted players he coached were former Prince George's (Md.) County Police Chief Mike Flaherty and current University of Notre Dame President, the Rev. Edward A. "Monk" Malloy.