In 1980 Father Tom Gentile became the Chairman of the Catholic Schools Athletic Association, an organization which brings together Louisville catholic schools in all areas of sport. This time of year of course, much is written regarding the Toy Bowl which is headed up by the organization but the truth is the education outfit works year round to aid students all over the city.
Further, what Gentile managed to do with the Organization and which he continues to do is give an outlet for young people in the area who otherwise might be directionless. Because of what Father Gentile has managed to accomplish for students of all ages from a headquarters on Goldsmith Lane he is a sports legend of the Ville.
More than that Gentile is an avid stock car racer believe it or not, and a pretty good one at that, notably when he used to race at the Louisville Motor Speedway.
Karl Schmitt Sr. initially founded the CSAA, handing off the organization to Gentile upon his retirement. Since then Schmitt has passed away but his legacy lives on and it really says something that since the inception in the 1950’s only two men have taken the responsibilities of the CSAA; it really speaks to the respect garnered by the organization and what it means to so many of the people involved; and certainly Gentile continues the efforts begun by his predecessor.
Currently, Gentile works as an Archdiocese of Louisville and still is the Chairman of the CSAA; recently he was inducted into the first class of the Louisville Catholic Sports Hall of Fame.
Image courtesy of Louisville Catholic Sports, and features a trio of Toy Bowl athletes