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Former Potosi coach Eric Briehl headed into WBCA Hall of Fame
Eric Briehl
Eric Briehl coaches the Potosi girls basketball team to a record of 261 and the WIAA Division 4 state championship game in 1999. He will be inducted into the WBCA Hall of Fame on Sept. 26.

      Eric Briehl, a former coach at Potosi High School, will be among the 10 newest coaches to be inducted into the Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame on Saturday, Sept. 26.

     Briehl will join the 2015 Hall of Fame class at a banquet held at the Glacier Canyon Lodge of the Wilderness Resort in Wisconsin Dells, where there will be a dinner, followed by the induction ceremony.

     Briehl, a 1968 graduate of Fennimore High School, played two years of basketball at the University of Wisconsin-Richland, where he helped the Road Runners to two conference championships.

     Briehl’s coaching career began in 1973 at Highland High School, where he was hired as the head boys’ basketball coach.

     During his seven years at Highland, Briehl said he was “schooled,” by future Hall of Famers such as Ron Benish (Bloomington), Jim Nedelcoff (Benton) and Bob Boettcher (Shullsburg) in the old Blackhawk Conference.

     While at Highland, Briehl also served as assistant and head football coach, and assistant and head baseball coach.

     From 1980 to 1987, Briehl assumed the head boys’ basketball position at Potosi High School.

     In 1981, he added the title of Athletic Director to his history teaching position.

     He then retired from coaching basketball to pursue a master’s degree in administration from Winona State University.

     Just one year later, a new chapter started, as Potosi could not find a head girls’ basketball coach, and with the capable assistance of Ron Kading, they ran the program for the next 14 years.

     During that time, the Potosi girls’ basketball program accumulated 222 wins, six conference championships and three regional titles.

     In 1999 under Briehl, the Chieftains went 26–1, and brought home the Division 4 state runner up trophy, after losing 49–43 to unbeaten Barneveld in the state title game.

     Later that year, Briehl served as the head coach for the WBCA South All-Stars in the annual All-Star game.

     A family move to Spring Green and the River Valley school district brought another short hiatus from the game, as Briehl assumed the elementary principal and later the athletic director positions.

     Returning to become the head girls’ coach in 2003, Briehl coached 10 more years before retiring with an accumulated total of 429 wins coaching boys’ and girls’ basketball.

     For the past few years, Briehl has enjoyed assisting in the sports of basketball for the River Valley girls’ program, and assisting his wife, Jane, the head coach of the River Valley softball program.

     In both sports, it has been an extreme pleasure to coach both of his daughters, Taylor and Emily.

     Among the former prep players to be inducted into the WBCA Hall of Fame this year, is 1995 Cassville graduate, Sam Okey.

     A feature on Okey will be published in an upcoming issue of the Grant County Herald Independent.