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Former USF lineman Thor Jozwiak hired as Clearwater football coach

The former Bulls guard with the distinctive hairstyle replaces Don Mesick, who recently stepped down.
Former USF all-conference offensive lineman Thor Jozwiak is the new football coach at Clearwater High.
Former USF all-conference offensive lineman Thor Jozwiak is the new football coach at Clearwater High. [ JONES, OCTAVIO | Times files ]
Published Dec. 16, 2020

Former USF offensive lineman Thor Jozwiak said Wednesday afternoon he has been named new coach at Clearwater High.

Jozwiak, who turns 28 on Dec. 23, replaces Don Mesick, who stepped down earlier this month after leading the Tornadoes to a 45-21 record and six playoff berths in as many seasons. Jozwiak, who played for the Bulls from 2011-15, spent the past two years as Mesick’s offensive line coach.

“I love Clearwater,” said Jozwiak, who teaches a ninth- and 10th-grade reading program at the school. “Man, the administration’s awesome, the staff is awesome and the community’s awesome, too. I’m excited because a lot of great things can happen, and they are.

“They’ve had success. Coach Mesick did a great job taking them to the playoffs every year he was there. A great foundation has been laid, now I’m so excited for everyone that’s involved because we can do something really, really special.”

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Jozwiak, whose dad, Brian, was an All-America offensive lineman at West Virginia and the seventh overall pick (by the Chiefs) in the 1986 NFL draft, is best remembered by Bulls fans for his garish mohawks and compelling conquest of physical adversity.

He missed the 2013 season after being diagnosed with an irregular heartbeat but returned to start 21 games over the next two seasons. As a senior in 2015, he helped tailback Marlon Mack record his second consecutive 1,000-yard season and was a second-team All-American Athletic Conference pick.

He described his new gig as the fulfillment of a lifelong dream.

“This is something I’ve been around my whole life,” said Jozwiak, whose wife, Sam, is expecting the couple’s first child in March.

“My dad’s been coaching in the state at this level since 1998. ... My mom’s a principal in Polk County, my sister’s a behavioral specialist in Polk County. This is what I was meant to do, and I love the fact that it’s going to be at Clearwater. I’m so excited, man. I’m pumped up.”

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