[Photo provided by Steve Woltmann/Aurora University]
"A lot like Plano," Ponx said. "That's what I grew up recruiting. It's fun when the whole town comes out on Friday nights. I grew up in Downers Grove. It's important there, but not like that."
That appeal, and the pull of family, led Ponx, a long-time college coach, to make the decision to reach out to Plano when the job opened up.
On Monday Ponx was approved as the Reapers' new head football coach. He replaces Brad Kunz, who announced in February he was leaving after six seasons to take the Plainfield East job.
Ponx, who lives in Oswego with his wife and two children, most recently was head coach at Aurora University for five seasons.
His interest, among 26 applicants, opened the eyes of Plano athletic director Jim Schmidt.
"When he pursued the job it was very intriguing," Schmidt said. "We were interested, we got down to the final four and we fell in love with what he had to say. Anytime you can get someone with that expertise it's a home run."
Indeed, Ponx has coached at the college level for close to 30 years, at Ohio Northern from 1988-2002, North Central from 2007-2012 and most recently at Aurora University. He also coached in high school at Downers Grove North and Willowbrook and was a defensive consultant for Naperville Central's 2013 Class 8A championship team.