Bill Cooley, the head mechanic and lane maintenance supervisor at Earl Anthony’s Dublin Bowl for the last 35 years, was presented the 2015 Jim Jaryszak Laneman Award at Bowl Expo on Thursday.
Because of his extensive knowledge of lane maintenance and Brunswick pinsetters, Cooley was hired by bowling legend Earl Anthony in 1980. The center has been the host of numerous Professional Bowlers Association national and regional events over the last 30 years.
“When I heard that I won the award, it blew me away. I am overwhelmed and humbled,” Cooley said. “Lanemen like working in the background. If you’re seeing the laneman, it is usually a bad thing, which is why this award and recognition is so special for the bowling industry.
“I want to thank all the people who won before. These were pioneers in the industry and their support has been unbelievable. I want to thank Jim Jaryszak for having a vision of how important lanemen are. If he was here today, I know he would be proud of what this has become.”
Cooley worked with the PBA lane maintenance crew led by Len Nicholson, the first recipient of the Jim Jaryszak Laneman Award, on lane conditions for the PBA tournaments and TV finals at Dublin Bowl.
Cooley currently handles lane conditions for the center’s league bowlers, including PBA Experience leagues for adult and youth bowlers, along with monthly scratch tournaments using mostly PBA oil patterns.
“He is very talented when it comes to knowing oil patterns,” Ted Hoffman Jr., a PBA Hall of Famer and co-owner of Dublin Bowl, said in nominating Cooley. “Many of our local bowling centers come to Bill when they need help with their lane conditions.”
The Jim Jaryszak Laneman Award first was awarded by the United States Bowling Congress Equipment Specifications and Certifications team in 2011 to recognize a person for his behind-the-scenes career as a laneman. It is named in honor of the former USBC Research Manager, who died in 2010. Jaryszak was instrumental in setting up the USBC Sport Bowling program and was the point person as USBC worked with the PBA on updating its “animal” patterns.
Cooley is the fifth recipient of the Jim Jaryszak Laneman Award. In addition to Nicholson, the former Director of Lane Maintenance for the PBA, previous recipients are: Sam Baca, the first Director of Lane Maintenance for the PBA, in 2012; John Davis, Kegel founder, who was posthumously honored in 2013; and Steve Cross of Kegel in 2014.
As posted on digitalbowling.com