Pat Carey played in the North Hills football program and has been an assistant coach in the program for almost two decades.
Now, Carey is in charge of the North Hills program.
Carey was named North Hills' new coach Monday night. He succeeds Jack McCurry, the third-winningest in WPIAL history (281-108-9 record) who retired in January after 35 years at the helm.
Carey, 42, was a standout running back-defensive back on the legendary 1987 North Hills team, which was ranked No. 1 in the country by USA Today. Carey has coached North Hills for 19 years, 15 as defensive coordinator.
Carey has yearned to be a head coach for a number of years and believes it is special to take over at his alma mater.
"I appreciate so much what Jack has given me as a player and coach," Carey said. "He had a blueprint for success. The blueprint may not be exactly the same in my tenure, but a lot of what I learned from him will be a part of who I am as a coach."
As defensive coordinator, Carey was highly respected by other WPIAL coaches. Carey believes he will continue to run the defense.
"We're going to retain a lot of staff members who are currently working in the high school building, because they are quality [assistant] coaches," said Carey, who is a physical education teacher at North Hills. "Obviously, as head coach I will have my thumb on everything and will have a say on what goes on throughout the entire team. But definitely defense is where I excel and will remain."