Inducted in 2002
Avitus Ripp graduated from Middleton High School in 1960. He earned varsity letters in football, basketball, and track. Avitus was given first-team All Badger Conference in 1958 and 1959 while playing center and defensive tackle. In 1959 he was also named second team All-State. Middleton won the Badger Conference Title in 1959. Avitus was also chosen second team All-Badger Conference in basketball.
In 1964 Avitus graduated from UW-Whitewater. At Whitewater he was accredited first-team All-WSUC honors in 1962 and 1963. In 1963 he was also named All-NAIA District 14. The 1962 Whitewater Warhawk team was WSUC champion. Avitus was inducted into the UW-Whitewater Athletic Hall of Fame in 1990.
Avitus started his coaching career in 1964 as freshmen football coach at Racine St. Catherine's. The next year he was an assistant coach for the varsity. He was also an assistant in basketball, tennis, and track.
Two years later, in 1966, Avitus was named the head varsity football coach of the Little Chute St. John's Dutchmen where he coached from 1966-1972. St. John's won the Fox Valley Catholic Conference Title in 1967. He was named Coach of the Year in the conference. He was also the varsity basketball coach for five years and an assistant in track.
Next, Avitus coached at Menasha St. Mary's from 1972-1976 as varsity football coach and as an assistant in basketball and track.
Avitus became the head varsity football coach and athletic director at Richland Center High School in 1976. At Richland Center he established a winning tradition with 18 winning seasons in 20 years. His Richland Center Hornets won conference championships in 1986, 1990, and 1991. Avitus earned Coach of the Year honors in 1986 and 1990. In 1990, Richland Center made it all the way to Camp Randall and finished second in the state in Division III. After retiring he assisted at Richland Center for two years. His record was 150-68.
Avitus did a coaching stint at Weston High School in 1999 where he recorded his 200th victory. His record was 8-3. His varsity coaching career spanned 33 years with a record of 204-115-2.
Avitus was a WFCA member for 25 years. He was an assistant for the South teams in the Shrine game in 1992 and 1997.
Highlights of Avitus’ coaching career included coaching his three sons who went on to play collegiately at Whitewater.
Avitus Ripp's legacy is discipline, hard work, intensity, and heart.
Tag(s): Hall of Fame