Rick Giampietri To Be Honored at EWU Football Banquet

For serving 40 years as a coach and educator, Central Valley football coach to receive the Tom Oswald Award at Friday's banquet

Central Valley High School head football coach Rick Giampietri, who is in his 40th year as a coach and educator in Spokane, Wash., will receive the Tom Oswald Memorial Award at this Friday's (Jan.  8) Eastern Washington University Football Awards Banquet.

The event starts at 6:30 p.m. at the Pence Union Building on the EWU campus in Cheney, Wash., with RSVP's required by Jan. 6 by calling 509-359-2463. Cost is $25 per person.

Giampietri is a 1970 graduate of Eastern, and also graduated in 1966 from Spokane's North Central High School and obtained his master's degree in 1975 from Whitworth. He was an assistant coach at Lewis and Clark and Shadle Park high schools, but since 1983 he has been at Central Valley.

In 17 years as head coach for the Bears, Giampietri has compiled a 107-63-1 record, including the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association State 4A title in 1997. His teams won the 1995, 1997 and 2008 Greater Spokane League championships, and in 1995 and 2008 he was GSL Coach of the Year. Twice he earned Washington State Football Coaches Association District 8 Coach of the Year honors, and in 2001 he was inducted into that organization's Hall of Fame.

Besides coaching football, Giampietri has coached wrestling for 35 years (eight as a head coach), golf for 20 years and softball and track and field. He is active in several professional activities, including 29 years of involvement with the annual East/West All-Star football game and 22 years of service on the Washington State Coaches Association executive board.

The Tom Oswald Memorial Award was created in 2007 in the memory of former Cheney High School coach Tom Oswald, who succumbed to cancer on Aug. 4, 2006. Recipients are selected by the Eastern coaching staff for following Oswald's creed of "Doing the Right Thing" for youth.

The first award was presented to former EWU punter Ryan Chicoine and his wife Amy for adopting three foster children. Chicoine played in 1998 for EWU after graduating from Lakeside High School in Nine Mile Falls, Wash., in 1996.

The 2008 winner was former Eastern defensive lineman Josh Martin, who played for Eastern from 1997-2000 and went on to work at the Excelsior Youth Center in Spokane. Former Eagle wide receiver Kyler Randall (2000-01-02-03) was the 2009 recipient for his efforts in Honduras working for the Peace Corp.



More on Tom Oswald . . .

Former Cheney High School head football coach Tom Oswald passed away on Aug. 4, 2006, after a battle with cancer. He won 165 games in 25 years in Cheney.

Oswald graduated from Cheney High School in 1967, then played at Spokane Falls Community College before transferring to Oregon State  University. He played for Dee Andros, who directed the Beavers to records of 6-5 (1970) and 5-6 (1971) while Oswald was there.

After a year as a graduate assistant coach at Oregon State, he spent two seasons as a coach in Grant's Pass, Ore., where he met his wife, Susan. After one year as a graduate assistant at Illinois and two seasons as head coach at Kennewick, Wash., High School, Oswald returned to Cheney as head coach in 1977.

He compiled a 167-90-7 career record in 27 seasons as a high school coach. His Cheney teams made the playoffs a dozen times and played in state championship games in 1988 and 1989. Among the players he coached were Steve Emtman, a first-round NFL draft choice in 1992, and veteran NFL offensive lineman Rick DeMulling.

One of his favorite sayings and keys to his success was: "Kids don't care how much you know until they know how much you care."

Eastern and then-EWU head football coach Paul Wulff dedicated its game against Oregon State on Aug. 31, 2006, in the memory of the OSU graduate. Oswald's son Drew, who lettered for EWU in 2004 and still lives in Cheney, served as an honorary captain for the Eagles. Eastern wore stickers on their helmets that season with the initials "T.O."

Oswald and Wulff worked together at many Eastern summer football camps over the years. In 2004, when Drew was playing for the Eagles, Tom attended nearly every Eastern game and practice despite regular cancer treatments. Wulff asked him to give the weekly Friday night pre-game speech to the team the night before Eastern knocked off No. 1 ranked and top-seeded Southern Illinois in the 2004 NCAA Football Championship Subdivision Playoffs.


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