Over 60 Years of Supporting Young Athletes
The Bloomington Knockers were founded in 1957. Paul and Barb Segobiano wanted to provide a way for young athletes on the west side of Bloomington who had fewer resources be able to participate. With the help of a local priest who had recently returned from a shrine in Knock, Ireland (hence the "Knockers"), our program was born.
We believe in creating a positive environment for young athletes to have fun learning the sports of football and cheer. We value providing all athletes the opportunity to compete, having positive role models in our coaches, and supportive fans. We also believe that our differences make us stronger and we actively work to ensure that our program reflects the diversity of Bloomington/Normal so we can all work together to be our best selves on and off the field.
Our program is built on a foundation of community and engagement. We are fortunate to be the longest running youth football program in Central Illinois and believe that our players, cheerleaders and alumni come back each year because we are a program deeply embedded in the fiber of our families and the local community. We focus on creating a positive environment, teaching strong fundamentals, and providing opportunities to all athletes to compete above winning. Once a Knocker you are forever part of our program family that encourages growth, celebrates victories and supports one another in defeat. From an athletic perspective, we believe that the formative bantam and junior levels succeed when our players are engaged, encouraged, and most importantly have fun participating in learning the game of football. We encourage them to be “their” best and not “the” best and endeavor to provide all athletes as much playing time as possible. At the junior varsity level we encourage the athletes to advance their base skills to a another level where they compete from preparation in practice through the final whistle of the game. Once a varsity, our gold helmets represent the leadership of our program and a level of young men who are prepared to succeed at a level similar in competition to what they will experience when they enter high school. Across all levels our coaching staff helping each individual develop a love for the game and desire to do their best in all aspects of life. The focus is always on personal growth, development of strong character and building of “we not me” attitudes.
We are honored to carry on this tradition and hope to welcome you to our football and cheer family.
-Brian Segobiano and Nick Cottone