That special football team of 1992 ran teams off the field on the way to an 11-0 start.
But this Scouts team also played sterling defense led by a player who liked to hit - linebacker Brian Funk.
"He was a very active player,’’ said "He was a (Brian) Urlacher player before there was an Urlacher. He tried to run over people. He didn’t avoid contact."
recalled watching Funk pick off a pass against a rival from the North Suburban Conference.
"The one play that sticks out was during the Stevenson game,'' Lerner said. "Funk intercepted a pass and he was in the middle of the field. He saw a Stevenson player coming at him. Rather than avoiding him Funk ran right toward him and ran him over.
"He regained his balance and began to run directly at another Stevenson player," Lerner continued. "He ran through him as well. Scoring on that play was an afterthought. I think he would have looked for a third and fourth guy if he had the chance."
Teamed with fellow linebacker Bill Menke, Funk punished enemy runners who came his way. Now running marathons and living near Philadelphia, Funk is managing director with Logan Circle Partners. Logan is a fixed income asset management firm based in Philadelphia, and owned by Fortress Investment Group. He and his wife Neda are the parents of two young boys, Tyler and Cooper.
It doesn't take much for Funk to recall those Glory Days playing football at Lake Forest. will always stand out in school history.
"My Lake Forest Scouts football experience from freshman year onward was
second to none,'' Funk said. "While memories fade a bit, that season will be something I will never completely forget. Life lesson No. 1 - it is always about the people. Billy (Menke) and I ran free hitting everything in sight thanks to our fantastic defensive line and Coach (Mike) Munda, who was not shy about calling a blitz. And if he didn't, Billy and I sometimes did anyway."
Munda was the Scouts' defensive coordinator. He had no trouble recalling this powerful twosome.
"Those two studs ruled the NSC,'' Munda said. "With my soft and caring voice I would get their attention by calling out FUNK and MENKE. There were some spectators and opposing fans who thought I was using profanity toward Menke. They were both the kind of players that knew how to get the job done. I enjoyed turning both of them loose on the opposition, just ask Stevenson."
Relative Newcomer to Football
Funk didn't bring much playing experience to his high school team.
"I didn't start playing organized tackle football until eighth grade,'' he said. Because I grew so early, I actually had a giant black X placed on top of my helmet preventing me from carrying the football."
No matter, he took up playing on the other side of the ball. He was born to play defense.
"I quickly realized that it was a lot more fun hitting people than being hit,'' he said. "I was hooked."
Lerner recognized how good Funk was early.
"I think Brian was our most sound defensive player,'' Lerner said. "Brian had such great instincts and a great understanding of the game. He was always in the right place at the right time."
Historic 1992 Season
That 1992 season found the Scouts routing NSC rivals Libertyville and Stevenson. In the 41-0 romp over the Wildcats, the powerful Lake Forest offense even gave Funk a chance to carry the ball.
"One of my few memories from that game is an audible Josh called to
get me a carry at running back,'' Funk said. "And well, I fumbled. Even up by multiple touchdowns I felt terrible. So much of what made that group so special was wanting to do your best for that group of guys. Again, I hope my own boys will have a 'those guys, that place, that time' moment."
That 11-0 season concluded with a 24-20 loss to eventual state champion Wheaton Warrenville South in the Class 5A state quarterfinals.
"With the two of them, we let them pick a blitz,'' Myers said. "Brian was a major factor in that game with Wheaton Warrenville. He was also an outstanding person. He had a good knowledge of right from wrong.”
This campaign still sticks in his mind to this day.
"The rest was a blur until the Wheaton game,'' he said. "A great comeback but just a bit short. It was a bittersweet end to the perfect season. It proved we were good enough to play with anybody. In hindsight, it helped to
define the person I became years/decades later."
Funk played two years of football at Colgate University. He married a former Georgetown University lacrosse player (Neda), and now he chases her as they both run marathons. On Aug. 11, Funk will be in New York City competing in his first Ironman Triathlon.
"It takes a lot of soul searching training for a 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike and 26 mile run,'' he said. "Much of my strength comes from my wife and my boys Those high school football stories will have grown long in the tooth by the time they are old enough to appreciate them. And on some level the memories from that great Scouts football season."