DUNMORE, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – There were split loyalties in Dunmore for tonight’s playoff game between the Philadelphia Eagles and Chicago Bears.
While some were rooting for their favorite team, they were also supporting a Dunmore native who coaches for the bears.
Joe Pappa is a Green Bay Packers fan but why is he so interested in an eagles and bears game? Even more puzzling. Why is he pulling for his arch rival?
“I shouldn’t even be rooting for them but I have to,” Pappa said.
That’s because of Chicago’s defensive coordinator, Vic Fangio. He’s a Dunmore native and they played football together at Dunmore High School.
“He was one of the younger kids on our team when I was a senior and he played because he put it out there,” Pappa said.
Even from a young age, those who knew Fangio saw success on the horizon.
People who remember playing little league with him say it is his heart and hard work that has gotten him this far.
That dedication has helped Fangio to be one of the most respected coordinators in the NFL.
“He puts the bears in the situation today due to his work ethic, due to his intelligence due to where he came from, and who he is,” Tom karney, football fan said.
And some sports fans say he is the best of the best.
“This is not a defensive coordinator in the NFL. This is the defensive coordinator for the best defense in the NFL,” Karney said.
His career could be on to new heights. Fangio has been mentioned as a potential NFL head coach. Even though Dunmore mayor, Tim Burke is a hard core Eagles fan, he and the rest of Fangio’s home town are supporting him all the way.
“Whatever team he went to in the NFL he went to the top. And he deserves a head coaching job. And we’d like to see that in Dunmore. Whether he get’s it or not, we’re proud of how far he’s gone,” Mayor Burke said.
“I’d route for him no matter where he goes,” Pappa said.
Fangio has been with the bears since 2015. In all, Fangio has spent 19 years in the NFL as a defensive coordinator. And his first coordinator job was at his alma mater, under legendary head coach Jack Henzes from 1979 to 1981.