Mach thrilled with Anderson's promotion to Detroit C.C. head coach

David Goricki
The Detroit News

Detroit Catholic Central will have a familiar face leading its football program with the announcement Thursday that defensive coordinator Dan Anderson would be sliding over to take the head coaching job left open with Tom Mach’s retirement earlier this winter.

Anderson, 48, has been an assistant coach under Mach the last 20 years, the last 10 as defensive coordinator. He has been a teacher and dean of students for the past two decades at the Catholic League school.

Anderson’s best defensive unit arguably was in 2009 when the Shamrocks won their last state championship, limiting MHSAA record-setting quarterback Jason Fracassa to 293 yards and two TDs while intercepting two passes and sacking him three times in a 31-21 victory over Sterling Heights Stevenson. Catholic Central had eight shutouts that season, giving up 75 points, an average of 5.3.

Mach retired in early February after guiding Catholic Central to a 370-97 record since his arrival in 1976, the year after the state football playoffs were put in place.

Mach finished No. 3 on the state’s all-time record for wins behind Al Fracassa of Birmingham Brother Rice (430-117-7) and current Farmington Hills Harrison coach John Herrington (425-104-1). Fracassa retired in 2013 after winning three consecutive Division 2 state championships.

Mach, who led Catholic Central to more state championship game appearances (17) than any other coach, earning 10 state titles, was thrilled with the news of Anderson’s promotion to the top spot.

“Dan Anderson has been a terrific asset to our program over the last 20 years as an assistant coach and coordinator,” said Mach of Anderson. “He’s done an outstanding job. He bleeds blue and white. He loves Catholic Central. He does a great job of coaching the kids. He’s very dedicated to the overall philosophy of Catholic Central, teaching them discipline, goodness and knowledge.

“I think he’ll do a fantastic job because he’s done that for us the last 20 years. I think it was a great choice and I think it’s a choice that everyone will be happy about. I know the kids know that he’s a good coach and I’m sure that they’re really happy about that.”

The Shamrocks finished 13-1 this past fall, winning the Catholic League championship and advancing to the state title game at Ford Field, where they lost to Detroit Cass Tech.