Diel, who also works at Middletown Schools as a truancy officer, and has coached area youth football for years.
Before his accident and after, Mike played semi-pro football and for years has coached youth football for area leagues in Warren and Butler counties.
In 2016, as a member of the Ohio Crush Semi Pro Football Team, he helped his team to an undefeated season en route to a berth in a national championship game. The season earned Diehl a spot on the Ohio Football League All Star Team.
Among his many honors, in 2019 he won first place in an Indiana power-lifting competition and later that year finished second in the World’s Strongest Disabled Man in Smith’s Falls, Ontario, Canada.
In 2020 he battled to second place in the Arnold Classic Disabled Strongman in Columbus, Ohio. And in November, he’s headed to Iceland’s capital city Reykjavík to compete against similar athletes from around the globe.
Madison Head Football Coach Dan Baker said his defensive line coach and his strongman pursuits show his team – and all athletes at the high school and local youth leagues - what grit and determination look like.
“Coach Diehl is a great example to the young men and women in our program. He is a shining example of what it means to overcome adversity and can speak to that every day,” said Baker.
“He does a great job of challenging our young adults to find a way to get better and overcome any obstacles that are placed in their way,” he said.
Diehl is looking for help to fund his upcoming trip to compete again internationally in Iceland and those wanting to help can go to his My Venmo account: @gorillastrong80.