Joseph W. Righetti
Bethlehem-Center High School
Athlete of Distinction – Football
At Bethlehem-Center High School, Joe Righetti was named most valuable
lineman in his senior year. After high school, Righetti attended
Waynesburg College, where he was a four-year starter on the Yellow
Jacket Football Team under coaches Mo Scarry, Carl DePasqua, and Dr.
During his career at Waynesburg, the Jackets were 32-5-1 including an
undefeated season in 1966, when they won the NAIA Championship.
Righetti received many individual honors while at Waynesburg including:
• “Best Pro Prospect” three consecutive years
• NAIA All-American
• NAIA All-District
• Pennsylvania All-State, West Penn Conference
Joe also set a record with eighteen individual tackles in a game against
Muskingum College. In addition to being a football standout at
Waynesburg, Righetti also participated in wrestling and track. He place
forth in the 1966 and 1967 NAIA National Wrestling Tournament and held
the school record in the shot put. Joe was inducted into the Waynesburg
College Sports Hall of Fame for both football and wrestling.
Selected in the sixth round of the NFL draft by the Cleveland Browns,
Righetti played in the last NFL championship game before the AFL merger
and in the first ever Monday Night Football game against the New York
Jets in 1970. In 1972, injuries forced Joe to retire from professional
After his professional career, Righetti coached high school football in
New Jersey for nine years and has been a teacher at Whippany Park High
School for the past thirty-six years.