(Author’s note: Salvino was hired by a vote of 8-0 at a BVA School Board meeting this evening.)

Fifteen years ago, Joe Salvino was a finalist for the Belle Vernon Area boys basketball job. He didn’t get it.

So, he remained at Monessen and continued a coaching career that has made him the most successful basketball coach in Mon Valley history.

However, if things go as expected, the Belle Vernon Area School Board could pull off a coup tonight by hiring the veteran mentor to run the Leopards’ program.

Salvino, who has won over 640 games, including 21 section titles, six WPIAL and two PIAA crowns in his 34 years, is a vote of the board away from being hired at BVA. The BVA School Board is expected to hire him at tonight’s school board meeting.

The move would be a huge plus for the Leps, who are looking to replace Kyle DeGregorio after he resigned to take the girls’ job at Baldwin.

Salvino is a no-nonsense coach who preaches defense, hustle and teamwork. He would give the BVA program instant credibility and at the same time would give himself a new challenge that just may prolong his legendary career.

The move would undoubtedly open up eyes at both schools as Monessen’s boys program, which holds the WPIAL record for making the playoffs in consecutive years at more than 35, would be looking to replace a legend. And BVA would have a highly decorated leader at courtside.

Salvino, who is ranked eighth all-time in victories among WPIAL coaches, surely has his reasons for wanting to leave Monessen.

One very well could be the decision by the WPIAL to put all sports programs on a death sentence probation as a result of a fight started by fans during a Clairton-Monessen basketball game last season.

Under stipulations of that ruling, if any sports team in the district is involved in an incident, all sports would face immediately shutdown from competing in the WPIAL. That has to be one of the most ludicrous decisions ever made by the WPIAL.

Good luck BVA with your decision and good luck Coach Salvino. And, of course, good luck to Monessen finding a replacement.