Logan McHugh is one of the biggest contributors to Father Judge athletics.
You might not know the name because he’s never thrown a touchdown pass, never drained a 3-pointer or blasted a home run, but every time the football, basketball or baseball teams pick up a win, McHugh is part of it.
He’s the team manager.
McHugh started his high school career as a football player. But during his first year at the school, he ended up in the hospital after suffering a non-football related injury.
“I don’t want to get into it, but let’s just say it wouldn’t be smart to play football anymore,” the Bensalem resident said.
He gave up the dream of playing, but he didn’t give up the dream of being on the team, so he talked to coach Frank McArdle, and he became the manager.
It couldn’t have been a better decision after hooking up with all-everything coach Bill Koch, who has been with the Crusaders for as long as anyone can remember and was one of the most successful junior varsity basketball coaches in the world.
“It was definitely the best thing I’ve ever done,” McHugh said. “I knew Mr. Koch, but he became my mentor and taught me everything. He’s like a third grandfather to me. When I started, Coach McArdle introduced me to him and right away he helped me with what we needed to do for heat acclimation.
“He showed me around, he was my mentor, he showed me everything with the equipment. The rest is kind of history. He helped me become everything I became.”
McHugh didn’t take long to figure out what needed to be done. And his specialty was working with helmets. Not only was he good at it, he works well under pressure.
“I started getting guys water, but then I started fixing helmets,” McHugh said. “If a screw came off or if a facemask got loose, I had to make sure he was back on the field. Game days can be crazy, especially if there’s a 30-second timeout and two guys come up to you and need help. I need to run to get the piece and get it fixed in 30 seconds. It’s busy and hectic, but it’s really fun at the end of the day.
“I loved being the manager, Coach McArdle is awesome. He taught me so much about the game of football. He’s a great man. He welcomed me to the program and never treated me like anything other than a member of the team.”
He felt the same way about the basketball team.
In previous seasons, he filmed the games and uploaded the games to Hudl, a website that hosts game film. This year, he had a new role. He kept the statistics at the scorer’s table for the Crusaders. He also welcomed a new teammate who was an old teammate.
“This year I kept track of the book,” McHugh said. “That tells you who is doing well, who should get more minutes, who should get into the starting lineup, things like that.
“Basketball was fun because (Judge quarterback Mike VanHorn) was a manager, too. He’s a great person, great football player and better student. It was funny because for years, I worked for him, doing whatever he needed. And during basketball, I was telling him what we needed. He was great. He’s such a good person.”
McHugh is finishing up his responsibilities with the Crusaders baseball team, and after that comes graduation. It will be the end of him being a student manager at Judge, but then he’ll move to the next level.
McHugh is bound for West Virginia, where he will be the equipment manager of the defense for the Mountaineers. He leaves July 20.
“West Virginia offered large academic scholarship and I love their business program, specifically sports management program,” McHugh said. “Their equipment staff was awesome. It was a perfect trifecta. Great school, great money and great people in the business department and the football staff.
“It’s really exciting. They just got the best quarterback in the transfer portal and Josiah Trotter from St. Joe’s Prep is going there. That was exciting. He’s a junior, so he has another year, but I’ll be there with the son of an Eagle. I could write a 10-page essay on the Eagles, I love the Eagles.”
McHugh will be a manager at the highest level possible. It’s hard to believe how far he’s come as a manager in three years.
“My grandfather Wayne Davis suggested I do this when I was down the shore hanging out with my friend,” said McHugh, who lists his grandfather and dad as his role models. “He said it was popular in college, and I could email my coach and ask if I could be a manager. I’m really happy I did.”
And now he’s happy to continue his passion. If all goes well, he’ll be doing it long after college.
“It’s the furthest I’ve ever been away” McHugh said. “I’m 1 percent nervous, 99 percent super excited. I’ve always wanted to work and be a part of a football team. Just being part of a football team at the Division I level is almost surreal. It’s so exciting. I can’t wait for July 20 to start a new chapter.
“I’ve always loved sports my entire life, it’s what I dreamt of my entire life. My goal is to work in sports. I definitely want to do this until I can’t, basically. If I’m 90 years old and I can still work in sports, I’m going to be working in sports. I fell in love with this for as long as I can remember.”