The Walled Lake Western football program has found its man for the long haul.
Earlier this week, Kory Cioroch was hired as the Warriors’ new head coach after four seasons stewarding the program at Farmington in the OAA.
Fans and administrators at Western hope the hire stabilizes one of Oakland County’s blue-blood gridiron squads in the coaching department. Cioroch, 31, is the fourth coach the LVC powerhouse has had in place since 2017.
Three years ago, Mike Zdebski, left the state for a job at Chandler Hamilton in Arizona after two decades on the sidelines leading the Warriors. Alex Grignon took over for two seasons, taking Western to a spot in the Division 2 final four in 2019, before departing for a college assistant post at Michigan Tech in June.
Zdebski’s longtime assistant Mike Weiskopf grabbed the reins on an interim basis back in the summer on the heels of Grignon leaving abruptly at the last minute to pursue his college coaching dreams. Western finished 5-3 and lost in the district finals in the 2020 COVID-19 shortened campaign.
“We’re going to embrace the winning tradition here at Western and the overall culture of success that has been in place for years,” said Cioroch of his approach to the new endeavor. “Western Warriors football is a name brand around the state, the house is already built, it’s our job to uphold those standards and keep moving them forward.”
Cioroch prepped at Berkley as a linebacker in the 2000s. He was the defensive coordinator under John Bechtel at Farmington before becoming head coach there. The majority of the Western staff are expected to be retained under the Cioroch regime.
“I eat, sleep and breathe football. There’s not a second of the day it’s not on my mind,” Cioroch said. “I want to run a character program filled with high character players, build football players into high quality young men both on and off the field. If you can do that, you’re making the right kind of difference in the community.”
Cioroch’s 2018 Farmington club won a Division 3 district title. His 2019 Falcons team upset heavily-favored Oak Park in the first round of the Division 2 playoffs.
Western will be piloted on the field next fall by junior quarterback Drew Viotto, who finally takes over at the controls of the Warriors offense following two buzzy years waiting in the wings. Viotto (6-4, 210) already has four Division I college scholarship offers.
Crafty receivers Darius Taylor and Aidan Vaughan will return to be Viotto's top targets in the passing game. Speedy Thomas Young is set to highlight the Warriors '21 defense at linebacker and beefy linemen Zach Gammo and Skylar Garmo will anchors things for Western up front.