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Madison Football Sets Tradition with Dodger Walk

By MICHAEL ROMANO

MADISON, NJ - The Madison High School football team broke the school record for consecutive victories with 39, but they certainly did not erase the previous record set by long-time head coach Ted Monica.

The Dodgers show their appreciation and respect to Monica at every game when they take part in the “Dodger Walk.”  The walk consists of a path from the high school to the Theodore A. “Ted” Monica Stadium at Twombly Field, while the Dodger community surrounds the players.

About halfway between the school and the field sits a plaque set in stone dedicated to Monica that each player touches as they walk by as part of a tradition.

“The plaque is very important to us, it gets the team going,” junior quarterback A.J. Schmitz said. “It feels like we're right there with Ted Monica.”

Current head coach Chris Kubik has done what he can to keep the tradition going by winning three consecutive state championships, while maintaining an undefeated record throughout all three seasons.  Kubik is a believer in the importance of the tradition because it is displays the pride they have in their community.

“Coach Monica set the standard a long time ago and we respect his program,” Kubik said. “We try to follow his model. That’s why we touch the rock to honor him when we step on the field and we're going to play our hearts out for him every time.”

Monica led the Dodgers to six undefeated seasons, nine N.J. state championships, nine Suburban Conference titles and seven Morris County championships to contribute to his 177-50-4 record.

He also earned himself six Morris County Coach of the year awards, four “Man of the Year” awards and three Area “Team of the Year” awards.

Monica coached the Dodgers for 27 seasons, before stepping down in 1980 to become the school’s athletic director.

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