Former Sartell football coach Roger Trobec has passed away, according to social media posts by former players and fellow coaches.

Trobec graduated from Cathedral High School, where he was an All State football player, before winning a National Championship under John Gagliardi at St. John's University in 1965.

As a coach, Trobec led the Sabres' defense for 33 years, helping the team to 220 wins and posting 71 shutouts during his tenure, according to fellow former Sartell coach John Ross. Ross added that Trobec was responsible for implementing an innovative strength training program in the 1980's, which was ahead of its time.

Trobec helped lead the Sabre football team to the 1994 State Championship in which they beat Northfield at the Metrodome to cap a 14-0 season. The team was coached by Dean Taylor, who passed away in 2016, and Trobec's son, Paul, played linebacker and running back for the Sabres that season.

In addition to his coaching, Trobec was an Advanced Biology teacher, served on the St. Stephen volunteer fire department and was an EMT.

"Roger's film study, game preparation and game planning was legendary," Ross said. "Strong defense was the Sabres' calling card.

"He was my mentor and my heart is broken," Ross said.

Current Tech assistant football coach Mike Trewick played for Trobec while attending Sartell. He says Trobec was "a good person who was firm, but fair."

"Roger was just such a good person, one of those people you never wanted to let down," Trewick said. "He prepared you not only for the field and in the classroom but for life, and I still do things today that I learned from Roger."

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