Finke: 'I wish Coach McClain and Central well'

Finke: 'I wish Coach McClain and Central well'

Jeff Finke confirmed he was one of the four finalists for the Champaign Central job.

The father of Centennial standout and Illinois commit Michael Finke who coached the Franklin Middle School seventh-grade boys’ basketball team to a second-place finish in Class 4A two months ago said he was happy he went through the process, even if he didn’t wind up with the job.

“I’ve been here since 1986,” Finke said. “I wish Coach McClain and Central well. Champaign is my home. I’ve coached kids at all levels. These career opportunities to run a program like a Central or a Centennial come around every 15-20 years. That’s why we approached it.”

Jeff — who coaches Michael with the Peoria Irish AAU program — said Michael and his middle son, Nick, a freshman at Centennial, still are enrolled at Centennial.

“Champaign’s going to be our home for my lifetime,” Jeff said. “These last three years as I’ve coached in the Champaign schools and at the highest levels of AAU, I’ve realized coaching basketball is my passion. Giving back and sharing experiences is what I love to do. I love to teach.”