Without a doubt, Jim Cappelletti is one of the greatest coaches in Cleveland Heights history. He began his tenure in the district in 1959 as a physical education teacher at Wiley Middle School. In 1966, he not only began teching physical education and health at Cleveland Heights High School, but he also coached basketball, baseball, track and football.
Coach Cap won 539 games throughout his basketball coaching career and is currently ranked 18th amongst all coaches for his number of victories by the Ohio High School Athletic Association.
His teams won the Lake Erie League title 11 times. Coach Cap took his team to the State Final Four six times – 1975, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1997 and 2003. In 1975 and 1995, the team finished as the State Runner-Up. In 1997, his team won the Division I State Championship and he was named Ohio Coach of the Year.
Coach Cap’s teams achieved national rankings several times as one of the best basketball teams in the country by USA Today. Many of his players continued their careers at the next level, including one player who made it to the NBA and several others who played professionally overseas.
Jim was married to Nancy Fleming for 50 years. They have two daughters, Sharon and Kathy, and a son, James Jr. Coach Cap is currently an Assistant Varsity Coach at Shaker Heights.
For 45 years, Coach Cappelletti dedicated himself to the athletes of his community. Countless students ae better individuals for having known the teacher, the coach and the person known as “Cap.”