Jesuit High School's tradition of excellence in athletics is second to none in the Tampa Bay area and among the very best in Florida every year. The Tigers perennially rank at the top of the Florida High School Athletic Association's athletic and academic rankings among all Florida schools.
In 2019-20, Jesuit repeated as champion in the Florida High School Athletic Association's All-Sports Award rankings, a.k.a. the FHSAA Floyd E. Lay Sunshine Cup. The Tigers led the way not only in Class 5A, but over every school in Florida, tallying 101 points in the FHSAA's scoring system to win by 21.5 points over runner-up Lake Highland Prep.
The Tigers annually rank at or near the very top among all FHSAA boys sports programs in Florida. The past seven years (since 2013-14), Jesuit has finished No. 1 three times statewide and never below 6th. Among Jesuit's 12 FHSAA sports programs over the past six years, the Tigers have claimed District titles in 62 of 80 opportunities, a 77% clip.
Leading the way for the Tigers in 2019-20 was the State Champion soccer (head coach Eric Sims) and wrestling (Sal Basile) teams, the District and Region champion football (Matt Thompson) and swimming (Bill Shaffer) teams, and the District champion golf (David Simmons) and basketball (Neal Goldman) teams.
The Tigers also captured the FHSAA’s Academic Team Champion Award (ATC) among all boys programs in their classification for the third straight year in 2017-18. Jesuit athletics was led academically this school year by six teams that finished 1st, 2nd, or 3rd in their respective sports and classifications.
Placing 1st were basketball, football, and soccer. It marked the 2nd-straight year basketball, football, and soccer took top honors, though soccer was officially recognized as finishing second in 2016-17 by a tiebreaker procedure. Finishing in 2nd place academically in 2017-18 was Jesuit's State Championship swimming team, and earning 3rd place were wrestling and track & field (Andy Wood '92). Cross country (Jim Ranieri) finished with Jesuit's best unweighted team GPA, edging out soccer 3.673 to 3.666, with swimming in 3rd (3.609).
Jesuit athletics is comprised of 22 teams in 12 sports - 12 Varsity, 7 JV, and 3 Freshman squads. Tiger teams have combined to win 24 state titles in eight sports: soccer (7), baseball (5), cross country (4), basketball (3), swimming (2), football (1), track & field (1), and wrestling (1). The athletic program involves student assistants in training, managing, announcing, live streaming, timing, and scoring. Interscholastic athletics are an important part of the total formation of Jesuit students, and every student is encouraged to participate in some way. Jesuit teams uphold the highest standards of sportsmanship, and Jesuit athletes compete for the greater glory of God, Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam (AMDG).
|FHSAA Boys All-Sports Award - All Classifications|
|1. Plantation American Heritage||111.75|
|2. Ft. Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas||106.75|
|3. Tallahassee Lawton Chiles||96|
|4. Jacksonville Bolles||91.75|
|5. Jesuit High School||79.5|
|6. Weston Cypress Bay||78|
|7. Orlando Lake Highland Prep||76.75|
|8. Miami Belen Jesuit||75|
|9. Miami Columbus||66|
|10. Lake Mary||63|
|1. Jesuit High School||107|
|2. Ft. Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas||103.5|
|3. Plantation American Heritage||92.25|
|4. Orlando Lake Highland Prep||92|
|5. Pinecrest Gulliver Prep||77.75|
|6. Tallahassee Lawton Chiles||74|
|7. Jacksonville Bolles||73.5|
|8. Winter Park||68|
|8. Homestead South Dade||68|
|10. Orlando Dr. Phillips||66.5|
Athletic Program Awards
Jesuit’s athletic program, teams, and individual student-athletes have earned many awards and honors during the long history of the school. Below is a listing of some of the prominent program and team awards:
Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) Boys Outstanding Athletic Program of the Year
Tampa Bay Times Outstanding Athletic Program
Tampa Tribune Athletic Program of the Year
Baseball - 1997
Soccer - 2001
State Champion Teams
Baseball - 1994, 1997, 2000, 2014, 2019
Basketball - 1950, 1984, 2013
Cross-Country - 1998, 2000, 2004, 2005
Football - 1968
Soccer - 1987, 1995, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001
Swimming - 2017, 2018
Track - 2003
The Tiger Tradition
Jesuit High School has more than 100 years of athletic excellence. Since humble beginnings at the turn of the 19th century, Jesuit's athletic programs have developed, through the decades, into nationally recognized championship contenders.
These classic photos offer a glimpse of Jesuit's storied athletic history.
Al Lopez Sr. '27 was Florida's first professional baseball player. He is the namesake for Jesuit's Al Lopez Sports Complex.
Jesuit's 1943-44 basketball team won the Southwest Conference Championship.
1921- Jesuit's first football team
1959 basketball - No. 4 is professional baseball legend Lou Piniella, who was a basketball star at Jesuit.
Swimming circa early 1950s
1968 State Championship football
Running back Leonard George - 1968 State Champion football. The first African-American to receive a scholarship to play at the University of Florida.
Coach Paul Straub during the construction of Jesuit's gym in 1961. Straub served Jesuit for 42 years as coach of several sports, and also as athletic director, alumni director, and teacher.
1980 baseball. Dave Magadan is in the back row, fifth from the right. Magadan spent more than a decade playing for several MLB teams.
Jesuit High School is home to the area's premier high school athletic facilities, providing student-athletes with state-of-the-art venues, top training equipment, updated locker and shower facilities, and an aesthetically stimulating athletic environment.
Alumni Track & Field at Corral Memorial Stadium features a state-of-the-art synthetic playing field, which was resurfaced in 2015, and rubberized track surface. The playing field is used by the football, soccer, and lacrosse programs.
Paul Straub Field at Hyer Family Park was named field of the year by the National High School Baseball Coaches Association. Its dimensions are 320 feet down the lines and 380 to center, and it is perhaps the finest athletic facility in the Tampa Bay area.
The south side of the Al Lopez Sports Complex overlooks Alumni Track and Field. The Oliva Weight Room inside the complex is equipped with elite, well-maintained equipment and features high, arched windows that overlook Alumni Track and Field and Corral Memorial Stadium, providing an inspirational view of the playing fields and stadium area. The Tigers' Den on the south side serves as the athletes' entrance to the locker room and training areas.