|Death: ||Sep. 27, 2010|
The Heidelberg University football team has lost a member of its family today with the passing of assistant coach Jason Bendekovic. Jason passed away early this morning at St. Vincent Hospital Mercy Medical Center from complications dealing with a blood clot in his lungs. His brother, Ron, passed away five years ago from a similar condition. Ron was an assistant coach with Ohio Northern University at the time.
Jason had been a member of the Heidelberg community for five years, serving as an assistant coach (offensive line) and as recruiting coordinator. Over his coaching career, Jason had the opportunity to impact hundreds of live through his guidance and mentoring of young men.
Jason had over 17 years of coaching experience and guided numerous all-league honorees at Heidelberg, as well as top student-athletes. Prior to joining the Heidelberg coaching staff, he had coached at the United States Merchant Marine Academy and the University of Rochester.
He originally hails from Monaca, Pa., and graduated from Allegheny College. While at Allegheny, Jason played alongside his brother, Ron, and was a two-time all-conference offensive lineman.
"Coach Bendo will be greatly missed," said head coach Mike Hallett. "He touched so many lives with his compassion, care and support. Please keep his family in your thoughts and prayers as they grieve the passing of another child in their family."
A full obituary will appear later this week.
Bringing 17 years of coaching experience to Heidelberg is Jason Bendekovic, who is in his fifth year on the sidelines coaching the offensive line, while also serving as the recruiting coordinator.
Bendekovic's offensive line has been paced by two-time All-OAC honoree James Blankenship. Blankenship closed out his career in 2008 with a spot on the conference's first team. In 2009, Nathan Kater was tabbed an All-OAC and all-region honoree and was named a 2010 D3football.com Preseason All-American. Along the way Derrick Arbogast earned a spot on the Academic All-OAC Team and the ESPN the Magazine Academic All-District Teams. This summer Arbogast was selected as a nominee for the AFCA Good Works Team.
Prior to Heidelberg, Bendekovic spent the 2005 season as the offensive line coach and recruiting coordinator at the United States Merchant Marine Academy. Bendekovic was the offensive line coach and recruiting coordinator at the University of Rochester from 2000-05.
Bendekovic also provided assistance as the offensive line coach at Rutgers University (1999), Union College (1997-1998) and Plymouth State College (1996) following his graduation from Allegheny College in 1995.
While at Allegheny, Bendekovic helped lead the Gators to a 38-6 record and three NCAA Tournament appearances in four years. He earned all-conference offensive line accolades in 1993 and 1994.
Bendekovic graduated from Allegheny with a bachelor of arts degree in psychology. He is a native of Monaca, Pa. and currently resides in Tiffin, Ohio.
Created by: Karen
Record added: Sep 27, 2010
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