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Stewartville volleyball coach faces sanction or dismissal

Stewartville's hall of fame volleyball coach John Dzubay is under scrutiny for alleged violations within his program, and a grass-roots campaign is under way by his supporters to save his job.

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John Dzubay will address the Stewartville School Board on Monday to answer to alleged Minnesota State High School League rules infractions within his high successful volleyball program. The MSHSL could issue punishment at an April 2 board meeting, but before that the school board could decide not to renew Dzubay's contract.
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Stewartville's Hall-of-Fame volleyball coach John Dzubay is under scrutiny for alleged violations within his program, but a campaign is under way by his supporters to save his job. 

The Minnesota State High School League is reportedly considering three alleged violations, and the Stewartville School Board plans to discuss Dzubay's possible termination during an open school board meeting on Monday.

Dzubay told the Post-Bulletin on Friday that it was his choice to have the meeting open, rather than closed, so he would have a brief opportunity to address the school board. 

"I figured we might as well make it all public," Dzubay said. "I will get five minutes to address all of the allegations. What can I say in five minutes? I'm not sure what I'm going to say."

One Stewartville High School official declined comment and another did not return a phone message Friday afternoon. 

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A Facebook page has been established called Support Coach Dzubay which outlines the nature of the alleged violations, and Dzubay confirmed them as follows: 

• Out-of-season coaching by a member of varsity volleyball coaching staff.

• Use of athletes to help run a skills class for first- through 6th-grade girls on Sundays during the volleyball season.

• Encouraging use of open gym during the summer to get extended time for the mile in the fall. 

Dzubay said he doesn't believe he did anything wrong with regard to the first two allegations, but he acknowledged how open gym time in summer could be construed as "undue influence" on athletes. 

Dzubay shared with the P-B a three-page letter dated Feb. 18 which he sent to Stewartville School Board members, addressing each allegation in detail. 

Dzubay revealed in the letter that he has been asked to resign by Stewartville Superintendent David D. Thompson. 

In the letter, Dzubay noted that in the 35 years he has been coaching Stewartville volleyball, the program has had no MSHSL violations "and we have never purposefully tried to gain any advantage by breaking or bending the rules."

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Dzubay said that the MSHSL will address the alleged violations and a potential punishment at an April 2 board meeting. A MSHSL spokesperson on Friday said the league would make no comment at this time. 

Dzubay said the MSHSL could hand down a sanction of one season or more but it doesn't have the authority to terminate his job. 

The school board's response, however, could be to not renew Dzubay's contract, effectively firing him.

Dzubay said he has hired a lawyer in case he needs one, but he won't meet with the lawyer before Monday's school board meeting. 

Dzubay guided Stewartville to the program's fourth state championship in November, in the team's 22nd trip to state. He was elected to the Minnesota Volleyball Coaches Association's Hall of Fame in 2003, and in 2012 he became just the third coach in state history to reach 800 career wins. 

Related Topics: VOLLEYBALL
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