The 1986 Covington Buccaneers had a lot of new faces due to the graduation of an outstanding senior class from a year ago, which led to an up-and-down season where the Buccs finished with a 5-5 record.

1986 Covington Buccaneers: Row 1 - Dana Taylor, Cott Yantis, Scott Tayler, Brian Olson, Andy Ingle, Bill Miller, Nick Bitner, Rick Seman, Rich Phillis. Row 2 - Steve Sink, Ray Burton, Tab Brinkman, Shane Powell, Tony Iddings, Heath Finfrock, Randy Hartman, Brian Looker, L.G. Henry, Shawn Lear, Tim Fitzpatrick, David White, Tom Barbee. Row 3 - Jack Schwamberger, Jeff Gariety, Doug Hartman, Mark Hagan, Kyle Boehringer, Rob Anspach, Jamie Rose, Doug Dilley, Scott Robbins, Corey Smith, Hans Stocker, Josh Burns, Shad Earick, Charlie Burgbacher. Row 4 - Mark Westfall, Steve Shilt, Scott Ponchilla, Chris Clark, Steve Spurgeon, Bobby Sellman, Jason Lyle, David Glenn, Jamie Stevenson, Andy Whiteman, Andy Angle, Dusty Stump, Shawn Baker, Shane Stachler, Joe Boyer.
Charlie Burgbacher

After the 1980 season the Buccs had a few down years before last year’s 11-2 playoff team brought back the expectations Bucc fans have been use to. Expectations were high again this season because of the nine returning lettermen left over from last year.

Unfortunately, the losses suffered from last years senior class were too much to overcome and the Buccs couldn’t mount a solid run to get back to the state playoffs.

Things looked promising after a 7-0 win over rival Bradford in the season opener. The Railroaders were solid a year ago and returned much of its roster this year, making them a pre-season favorite to many news publications in the area. The win for the Buccs only increased the anticipation for the possibilities ahead.

The high expectations and a return trip to the playoffs were dashed over the next two weeks, however. Back-to-back losses to Twin Valley South and Arcanum suddenly threw a monkey wrench into any plans of going to the post season.

The Buccs responded by winning three out of their next four games. The three wins came against tough opponents in Milton Union, Mechanicsburg and Miami East, but the one loss was a 46-0 shutout at the hands of Tipp City.

The Buccs then dropped two out of their last three to finish at 5-5 on the season. Two of the losses came against Springfield Catholic and Versailles, two teams which have a history of sporting good football teams.

Covington finished the season strong with a 22-6 win over Lehman in the season finale.

Despite struggling with consistency and a lack of depth, the Buccs had some solid players who contributed to last season’s playoff run as juniors.

Perhaps the most dominating player on the Buccs’ roster was Brian Olson, who went on to play college football at the University of Dayton.

Brian Olson was one of the top players in the history of the program and a key contributor the the 1985 team who advanced to the state semi-final. He was also named “Lineman of the Year” for the Buccs in 1986. After graduating high school in 1987, Brian went on to play college football at the University of Dayton for legendary coach Mike Kelly. While playing for the Flyers, Olson earned All-American honors. Due to his outstanding high school and collegiate careers, Brian Olson is a member of the Covington Athletic Hall of Fame.

1986 BUCCS - 5-5





Twin Valley South






Tipp City




Miami East


Springfield Catholic






1986 Seniors: Kneeling (L-R) - Scott mantis, Nick Bitner, Rich Phillis, Rick Seman. Standing (L-R) - Bill Miller, Andy Ingle, Brian Olson, Scott Tayler, Dana Taylor.
1986 Coaches: Jack Schamberger, Charlie Burgbacher, Mark Westfall, Tom Barbee.
Rich Phillis was named "Mr. Football" after a stellar senior season.
Heath Finfrock #38 runs in the open field was named "Back of the Year".
Buccaneer quarterback Nick Bitner barks out the snap count at the line of scrimmage.
Senior leaders Rich Phillis #33 and Brian Olson #66 discuss strategy.
Brian Olson was named "Lineman of the Year".
Assistant coach Jack Schwamberger points out strategy to the offensive line.
Nick Bitner gets ready to take the snap from center Randy Hartman.
Coach Burgbacher gives his team a pep talk.