Basketball 03

Michael F. Sjoberg

January 5, 2021

Obituary

Michael Frank Sjoberg

Born August 28, 1962, died January 5, 2021. Mike Sjoberg is survived by his three children, Laura (30), Thomas (26) and Helayna (22), as well as siblings, Mathew (Kathy), Mary, and Patrick (Trina), nieces and nephews Madelyn, John, Joe, Grace and Jack, special niece, Kiran, and ex-wife, Denise. He is preceded in death by parents, Mathew and Marlene.

Mike was raised in Hoyt Lakes, Minnesota, where he excelled in basketball and golf at Aurora-Hoyt Lakes High School and Mesabi Community College. He participated in the NJCAA national golf tournament in 1982.  He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Education from the University of Minnesota-Duluth and his Master’s in Education from Baylor University.  Upon graduation, he taught and coached in Crosby, Texas for two years.

In 1988 he had the good and great fortune to land an assistant basketball coaching job at Saint Thomas Academy, which led to a physical education and health teaching position.  He may have been the only teacher every STA student when he was the only health teacher.  He eventually became the head basketball and golf coach, where he experienced unprecedented success. His overall basketball coaching record is 395-149, and at STA his teams won nine conference championships, six section championships state third place once, state runner up three times and twice state champions.  As STA golf coach, his teams won 14 conference golf championships in a row. Thanks to the nomination by co-coach and long-time friend, Tom Ihnot, Mike was recently elected to the Minnesota Basketball Hall of Fame.

In 2004, Mike became STA’s Dean of Students, then later the Assistant Headmaster.  He had a profound impact on the lives of hundreds of Cadets. He was consistent and demanding, but always with an eye toward the long-term development of the young men under his tutelage.

Mike’s life was cut short due to alcohol addiction, and the family wants his legacy to include the important lessons that addiction is a disease like any other, and that there should never be blame or shame about it, either for the person affected or their family.  Love cannot cure this terrible disease, and if it can take down a strong man like Mike, it can take down anyone.

Memorials will be determined at a later date, when a large commemoration can be held.  Private funeral mass for family is pending.

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