Noting the possibility of the Kaneland and Sycamore boys basketball teams meeting in a sectional championship game Friday, Peter Goff acknowledged his sports world is about to become a little messier.
“Hopefully this Friday, it’s tricky, where Kaneland and Sycamore both play in the sectional championship,” said Goff, currently dean of students at Sycamore and Kaneland’s new athletic director, effective July 1.
Goff was approved Monday night by Kaneland’s school board as the Knights’ new athletic director. A Sycamore resident, Goff’s loyalties will overlap even moreso going forward when his daughter, Chloe, competes for Sycamore, a main rival of Kaneland’s. Chloe Goff is a sophomore basketball, volleyball and track athlete for the Spartans.
Goff said one of his daughter’s friends helped defray any potential tension.
“One of them said, ‘You’ll never be my archrival, Mr. Goff. I’m happy for you.’ Yeah, it’ll be tricky, but I’m going to be a Knight, and I’m really looking forward to it,” he said. “That’s the thing my daughter and I really talked about. … She might want that change of her dad not being in school anymore so she doesn’t feel like she has that eye on her all the time. But, it’s my daughter, and I think people understand what’s going on.”
Goff, 46, is in his third year as dean at Sycamore after coaching boys basketball at Ashton-Franklin Center, Sterling and Bloomington. Much of his coaching success came at Sterling, where he mentored Joseph Bertrand, now a senior guard at Illinois.
Goff was hired at a salary of $85,000 plus benefits, according to Kaneland’s news release. Kaneland has used interim leadership to run its athletic department this year after former AD Leigh Jaffke resigned in October.
Goff was chosen from a pool of 103 applicants, according to Kaneland’s release. He and his wife, Molly, have three daughters, with Chloe being the youngest.
Despite not coaching at Sycamore, Goff said he has worked with the school’s administration to learn more about the management end of high school athletics.
He said his goal at Kaneland will be to help give student-athletes “the experience of a lifetime” competing for the Knights, and he already has an answer to the rhetorical “Where is Kaneland?” chant that surely will play better in Maple Park than Sycamore.
“Smack-dab in the middle of title town,” he said.