Longtime Oneonta High School baseball coach Joe Hughes was nominated for a National Federation High Schools Coaches Award for the 2019-20 school year, per a media release from Ron Woodruff of the New York State Coaches Association.

 "The New York State Public High School Athletic Association can select Coach of the Year Awards for twenty three New York State Sports," Woodruff said. "Those coaches selected for the NFHS Coach of the Year Awards become eligible for the NFHS Section 1 Coach of the Year Award. If selected as the NFHS Section 1 Coach of the Year, they become eligible for the National Federation High School, National Coach of the Year Award for their sport."

Hughes, who has coached the Yellowjackets for more than 30 years, received the nomination despite the cancellation of the 2020 spring season.

“We had about a week of practice, we must have had a heck of a week of practice," Hughes told The Daily Star, Friday, July 31. "For someone to think of me like that is humbling. Quite a recognition."

Hughes is one of three coaches from Section IV to receive a nomination as Susquehanna Valley football coach Mike Ford and Vestal girl's track and field coach Jim Cerra were also nominated.

"With their acceptance as the NFHS Coach of the Year Award, these coaches will receive notice from the NFHS office about additional information needed to be completed in the fall of 2020, with regional/national awards being selected and announced in January 2021," Woodruff said.

A 1976 graduate of OHS, Hughes has been involved with Yellowjackets sports for four decades as a coach and also served as the athletic director for 20 years before retiring last year. Hughes is the general manager and coach of the Oneonta Outlaws of the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League as well.

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