Head Coach Ken Leonard

Image result for ken leonard images

(33 years at SHG) Coach Ken Leonard was born July 7, 1953 in Lexington, Illinois to John and Iona Leonard. He was one of six children in his family, having two brothers and three sisters. He graduated from Chenoa (IL) High School, where he was a four-sport athlete, in 1971. Following high school, Leonard was a two year starter for the Hawks of Harper Junior College in Palatine, IL and a one year starter for the Trojans of Dakota State University in Madison, SD. Coach Leonard then attended and graduated college at Illinois State University in Normal, IL.

After obtaining his degree, Leonard returned to his roots at Chenoa, serving as assistant coach for the team. While there, the Redbirds made it to the 1979 Class 1A State Championship game, losing to the Hampshire Whip-Purs. From there, Leonard took over as head coach at Gridley (IL) High School. While at Gridley, he led his squads to 3 conference crowns and 2 consecutive playoff appearances in 1981 and 1982. He achieved a 32-9 overall record in his four years there, which remains the best among Gridley coaches. 

In 1984, Leonard took the head coaching job at Griffin High School in Springfield. He remains the present football coach as well as the school's athletic director.

Ken has a wife, Liz, and three sons, Phil (deceased), Derek and Brad.


2016 Assistant Coaching Staff

Offensive Coordinator: John Allison (14th Season)

Offensive Line: Chad Anderson (11th Season)

Tight Ends & Fullbacks: Doug Martin (4th Season) 

Wide Receivers: Dominic Walton (5th Season)

Running Backs: Steve Thomas (5th Season)

Defensive Coordinator: Jim McMann (27th Season)

Defensive Line: Ted Wise (15th Season)

Defensive Line Assistant: Dan Schafer (8th Season)

Linebackers: Bob Brenneisen (25th Season)

Defensive Backs: Neal Taylor (12th Season), Kevin Klemm (10th Season), and Doug Martin (4th Season)

Special Teams: Neal Taylor (12th Season) and Doug Martin (4th Season)

Strength and Conditioning: Doug Ludolph (11th Season)

JV Head Coach and Offensive Line: Tom Fiaush (24th Season)

Freshman Head Coach & Varsity Quarterbacks: Joe Bonansinga (6th Season)

Freshman Offensive/Defensive Line: Pete Edwards (2nd Season) and Mike Hortman (1st Season)

Freshman Defensive Coordinator: Tom Bowman (13th Season)

Freshman Assistant: Todd Chance (1st Season)

Athletic Trainer: Liz Sisemore (2nd Season)

Game Day Equipment Assistants: Tim Jennings (2nd Season) 

Video Coordinators: "Doc" Peterson 

Athletic Secretary: Lisa Burg


11/27/03 - Prior to the SHG vs. Joliet Catholic title game matchup

"Hey from Baghdad.  I played for Coach Leonard and the Cyclone program from the fall of 1985-1988, graduating from SHG in 1989.  Coach is a leader, teacher and molder of men. All of us who played for him owe him a lot.  I was a second string defensive lineman; no great athlete, but Coach always made me feel special. He cares about and, I believe, truly loves every one of his players.  My father was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's disease during the spring of my junior year. Coach Leonard was very sympathetic and supportive. When my father passed away in October 1992, Coach came to the funeral mass.  That meant the world to me and my family.  Coach helped to get me recruited to a small school close to home so I could be near my family to help with my dad.  He taught us all the value of friendship and self sacrifice which leads me to why I am writing this from Iraq.  I am a specialist in Alpha Company 1-41 Infantry and we are stationed at Ft. Riley, KS.  We were apart of the combat troops that liberated Iraq and are now keeping the peace. I never told Coach Leonard, but I hope he reads this before tomorrow's game.  Coach, you are the greatest, one of a kind.  Go Cycs!"  - Chris Cearlock '89 (posted this on the forum from Iraq)