Broomfield named Robert O’Brien as his next head coach, replacing Blair Hubbard. (Photo courtesy of Nicole Furuiye)
Almost a month after Broomfield High School parted ways with their head football coach, Blair Hubbard, the Eagles found their new head honcho. It’s a face the Louisville and Broomfield communities know well.
After an exhaustive search that turned up 35 candidates from across the country and seven finalists, BHS announced Monday that Robert O’Brien – who played for Monarch until 2004 and served on Hubbard’s staff as defensive coordinator from 2016 to 2018 – is taking over becomes the program.
The announcement ended a turbulent few months for the program. Immediately after securing her fourth state title in December, she placed Hubbard on administrative leave over allegations of “grooming.” Broomfield Police completed their investigation without charging anything, and Hubbard handed in his resignation on April 10 after a separate month-long investigation in the Boulder Valley School District.
That didn’t leave the school much time to fill the position. A committee of parents, students, and several coaches from other programs wasted no time searching for potential candidates. Dozens of parents and players alike wanted to take part in the promotion.
“It was very emotional,” said BHS sports director Steve Shelton. “Of course, after the success we’ve had this year, there was a lot of demand to be involved in this process.”
The committee eventually landed on O’Brien due to his extensive history in the local community as well as a strong coaching and teaching resume. O’Brien brings experience as both a defensive coordinator and offensive coach, having worked on staff from 2009-2011 at Broomfield, University High School at Greeley, Bear Creek High School at Lakewood, Hinkley High School at Aurora, Monarch High School and Colorado School of Mines.
O’Brien played a crucial role as Hubbard’s defensive coordinator during a 2016 season that saw the Eagles finish second to Pine Creek and knows the older siblings of some of the current athletes well. He also joins the workforce as a special education teacher.
“I feel really blessed,” O’Brien said. “It is very special to be able to come home. It’s a great opportunity and I can’t tell you how excited I am. The community, the school – the football program is the icing on the cake, to be perfectly honest. The student body, the community, the people who make Broomfield what it is, are what really drew me to the position.”
Shelton and the rest of the BHS track and field team will introduce O’Brien to the players and parents at a meeting on Thursday. O’Brien plans to emphasize the importance of community not just on the field but off it as he hopes to build on the flawless 14-0 record that put the Eagles in the history books in 2022.
“We get to carry Broomfield on our chests,” O’Brien said. “Not many high schools can do that, and when we wear our city on our chests, we want to honor that as much as we can.”
Now that O’Brien has officially embraced his “Eagle DNA” — a popular slogan within the program — BHS can breathe a little easier with spring drills already underway. Confident in choosing the school for the job, Shelton looks forward to seeing what O’Brien can bring to the field when the 2023 season begins in August.
“The committee made it clear that they were looking for someone who wasn’t going to bring much change, who would come in and have some knowledge of how we do business in Broomfield and also someone who would go and bring some energy,” said shelton
“It has been such a difficult four months for our community and our children to seek someone who brings a level of positivity and energy that they can quickly get things back on track. I think what stood out the most about Robert was his passion for children, his passion for football and the three to four years he spent as a coordinator with us six or seven years ago.”