Rich Hofman, the first baseball coach in Florida prep history to win 1,000 games, said Thursday he has left Broward County’s University School to help start a new co-educational charter school in Miami.
Starting in August, Hofman will be the athletic director and head baseball coach for SLAM, which stands for Sports Leadership and Management. The school’s nickname will be the Titans.
Hofman, who has won 10 state titles, experienced his greatest success in Miami, leading Westminster Christian to the No. 1 national ranking in 1992 and 1996.
Ironically, Alex Tamargo, who played second base and center field for Hofman on the 1991 Westminster team, will serve as SLAM’s principal.
“It’s exciting to work with one of my former players,” said Hofman, who will be replaced at University by his assistant, Eddie Tisdale. “Now, Alex will be my boss.”
The new school is located at 12th Avenue and NW 6th Street, inside a seven-story building that is currently under construction. The 500-seat gym will be on the seventh floor, with views overlooking the city.
SLAM, which is being run by the owners of Mater Academy, has room for 980 students in grades six through 12. It will likely compete in Class 3A, and it is geared toward students who want to go to college and major in a sports-related field.
Tamargo said he has already received applications from 200 students. He added that once there are 981 applications, then it will go to a lottery process.
Students will choose a career path such as physical therapy, communications or the marketing/business side of sports.
On the athletic side, the Titans will compete in a wide variety of sports. Every sport available for boys will also be available for girls, except for wrestling, which is for males only.
Wrestling, basketball and volleyball will be held in the Titans’ gym. Football and flag football, cross-country, track and field, soccer and tennis will be held at Moore Park. Swimming and water polo will be at Hadley Park. Baseball will likely be at Curtis Park, and the golf team is looking into having Melreese as its home course. In addition, softball will be at Fern Isle.
Tamargo said it is “surreal” to get the chance to open this school alongside Hofman.
“We’ve been talking about this for eight years,” he said. “After everything he has done for me and a lot of other ballplayers, it’s great to be able to reunite.”
• The third annual Miami Dolphins Dade vs. Broward All-Star game will be played Friday night at 7:30 p.m. at Sun Life Stadium. The game will once again feature standouts from both counties.
Miami-Dade leads the series over Broward 2-0, having won last year’s game 36-26. Tickets are $12 per person.
• Close to 90 standout high school football players from Miami-Dade and Broward counties will compete Saturday when TRU Sports Foundation hosts its Fourth Annual Public vs. Private All-Star Game at Monsignor Pace High School. The coin toss will be conducted by City of Miami Gardens Mayor Oliver Gilbert, and the kickoff is set for 6:30 p.m.
Players will be joined on the sideline by former and current NFL players, including ex-Monsignor Pace and University of Miami cornerback and current Pittsburgh Steeler DeMarcus Van Dyke. The Public squad will be looking to avenge last year’s 18-17 loss when Belen Jesuit’s Sergio Sroka nailed a 29-yard field goal on the last play of the game to give the Private team the win and a 2-1 series lead.