The Hilbert Hawks next just got a little bit bigger.
The Hilbert athletics department and college announced that they would be adding four new sports teams: men’s track and field, women’s track and field, women’s ice hockey, and football.
For a small college like Hilbert, it’s quite a big proposition, but one that brings much excitement to the community. The school also announced that they would be building an all-turf complex that the football team would play on with the track on the outside, with the hope of it being done by fall 2023.
Perhaps the most ambitious addition is the new football program, which is set to take the field next fall. Creating a football program and having it ready for competition in a nine-month span is uncommon, but something that Hilbert plans on achieving. The man who will be leading that charger will be newly announced and inaugural head coach Jim Kubiak.
Hilbert announced that Kubiak, who is from the Western New York area went to high school right down the street at St. Francis, was announced as the school’s first ever head football coach at a press conference this week.
The new coach expressed his excitement, saying he is ready for the challenge ahead.
“Being here today reminds me of the first time I walked out that Army-Navy tunnel,” he said.
After a successful high school career Kubiak attended the United States Naval Academy, where he was a four-year letterman and three-year starter on the football team and also received the Navy achievement medal. Jim not only started there but he stills hold the all-time records in passing yards and completions. After his time at Navy, he signed with the Carolina Panthers as an undrafted rookie in 1996 while also being on active military duty. From then on he played for the Indianapolis Colts, New York Jets, and Colts again while also making trips in the arena football league all from 1998-2005.
After his playing career Kubiak has coached at numerous colleges, most notably at Division two Mansfield as their offensive coordinator. Kubiak has also been the director of the WNY Quarterbacks academy where he has worked with numerous local student athletes.
In his press conference Kubiak said He also said how he has spent fourteen years here in WNY working and developing players in our region and how he is honored to have the opportunity to recruit students from the area. Kubiak said that when he was young he was taught, “be on time, know what you’re supposed to do, and bust your behind doing it.”
As he tries to build this program he said the foundation begins with “growth, constant improvement, hard work and execution.” Kubiak said he believes the Hawks will represent the traits of hard work and discipline. The most important thing in his presser was when he stated that the Hilbert football experience will be “fully prepared to imprint the belief that our players can achieve anything they can put their minds to.” Lastly, Kubiak was not shy of the fact that on the field work ethic and who you are on the field translates to who you are off the field.