John Desko Biography – Retired Lacrosse Coach

  • 5 MIN READ
John Desko's bio

John Desko served as the head coach of Syracuse Orange for 22 seasons. Image Source: Social Media.

  • Birth DateAugust 10, 1957
  • Birth Name John Terry Desko
  • Age 67
  • Also Known As John Desko
  • Mother's Name Alene Desko
  • Birth Place Union, New York, USA
  • Birth Sign Leo
  • Nationality American
  • Profession Lacrosse Head Coach
  • Partner Cindy Desko
  • Relationship Status Married
  • Eye Color Blue
  • Hair Color Grey
  • Children Tim Desko, Nicole Desko, Casey Desko, Ryan Desko
  • Education Bachelor of Arts
  • Wikipedia

Last updated on July 8th, 2022 at 07:05 am

Lacrosse is one of the most popular sports of all time. While talking about lacrosse coaches, the name John Desko can never be forgotten. He is the former head coach of the Syracuse Orange men’s lacrosse team. He played for the same team and was involved with the Orange for over three decades.

Furthermore, John belongs to the Desko family, one of the popular families in lacrosse, just like the Sutter family in the NHL. So now, let’s dig into some information about the lacrosse coach.

Comes From A Lacrosse Household

The lacrosse coach was born John Terry Desko on August 10, 1957, in Union, New York, USA. John often used to play with his dad while his mother, Alene Desko, stayed inside. Furthermore, he grew up in Camillus, a suburb of Syracuse, with his brothers, Dave Desko and Jeff Desko. The Desko siblings were All-American lacrosse players.

John Desko's Parents
John Desko played lacrosse with his father at a young age. Image Source: Casey Desko’s Instagram.

Moreover, the Syracuse native’s family has many lacrosse players. From John’s brothers to his nephews and children, everyone is involved in the sport. Talking about his education, he attended West Genesee Senior High School. After that, he went to Syracuse University, where he received a Bachelor’s degree in sociology.

John Desko Net Worth And Career

The sportsperson started playing lacrosse in high school. After that, he played at college before switching to a coaching career. In all these years of involvement, he must have earned considerably. Hence, we can assume that John Desko’s net worth is a notable amount.

As a high school player, John was a three-sport standout as he excelled in football, lacrosse, and basketball. At college, he began in the midfield and later switched to defense as an order of assistant coach Jay Gallagher. The athlete helped the team to a 10-5 record in 1979 and the school’s first NCAA playoff berth. As a result, he earned All-American honors.

In 1980, the New York native started his first coaching job at his alma mater. After Gallagher decided to leave Syracuse, Desko was offered an assistant job by Roy Simmons Jr. As a coach, Desko earned $1K annually, and during his spare time, he waited tables. For the next 19 years, he served as an assistant coach.

In 1999, the former lacrosse star took the top job from Simmons and became the head coach. Moreover, he made history as the first person outside of the Simmons family to coach the lacrosse team since 1931. Under John’s tenure as a head coach, Syracuse Orange won five NCAA Championships. Likewise, he also led the team to several other titles. After 22 seasons as a head coach, Desko retired and was replaced by Gary Gait.

During his retirement press conference, the coach gave an emotional goodbye to the place he had called home for the past 46 years. His works have helped him receive several awards and titles.

Talking about John’s salary, the exact amount has not been revealed yet. However, as a lacrosse coach in the USA earns $38,716 annually on average, Desko might have also earned around the range. Hence, John Desko’s net worth must also be a substantial amount.

Also Read: Learn About Charley Toomey

John Desko’s Marital Life

John had a successful coaching career. His professional life has touched many people, and he has gained significant fame as well. In addition, the talented coach is a happily married man. He shares a blissful marital life with Cindy Desko. The couple tied the knot in 1984.

John Desko’s wife, Cindy Kurz Desko, is often praised by him. During his retirement speech, he claimed that she had been by his side every step of the way, and he would not have succeeded in his career without her. Hence, it’s evident that the married duo is madly in love with each other. Let’s hope the Desko couple’s matrimony lasts a lifetime.

Three Of His Four Kids Attended Syracuse

As stated earlier, Cindy and John have been married for several decades now. The smitten couple have welcomed four kids in all these years of their marital relationship. John Desko’s children, Tim Desko, aka Timothy Desko, Nicole Desko, Casey Desko, and Ryan Desko, have already grown up.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Casey Desko (@cdesko)

Furthermore, three of the coach’s four kids, Tim, Ryan, and Casey, attended Syracuse University. On the other hand, John Desko’s daughter, Nicole, attended Hobart & William Smith Colleges. Likewise, the former’s son, Tim, previously played lacrosse, and he coached him during his college playing career. Currently, he works as an assistant coach at Lafayette College.

All in all, the former Syracuse head coach must be doing well. His love for lacrosse hasn’t stopped, and who knows, we might see him back behind the bench later. We wish him a contentful life further.

Trivia And Facts

  • John received the ACC Coach of the Year award for four consecutive years.
  • Desko was inducted into the National Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 2020.