The 2015 football season is knocking on the door and that means the start of a new era for the English High football team.
English High alumni Chris Carroll was named head coach in February and since then he has been busy assembling his staff and attending to the myriad of other details like fundraising and scheduling that need tending to in the offseason. Carroll, who quarterbacked the Bulldogs (he graduated in 2006) before going on to play four years at Bentley University, replaced Peter Holey, who stepped down after seven years.
Carroll’s first order of business is to run his two-day Youth Football Camp this Saturday and Sunday, July 25 and 26, at English High. The camp runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and is for youngsters in grades one through eight. No equipment is necessary. The cost is $50 and it’s due at registration Saturday morning in the school field house at 8 a.m. Additional children in the household are $25 each. There will be a cookout Sunday at 1 p.m.
When the Bulldogs hold their first official practice on Aug. 24, they’ll be greeted by a mostly new contingent of coaches. Carroll, who will work with the defensive backs and the quarterbacks, has a staff that includes Sam Hill, Jarrod Wallace, Mike Velasquez, Scott Fiore, Steve Haberek, Matt Griffin, Steve Carroll, Doug Mullins and athletic director Gary Molea.
Hill, a four-year starter at English who went on to start four years at linebacker at Framingham State, will work with the linebackers. Wallace was a former captain who graduated with Carroll in 2006. He went on to be a four-year starter at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. He works in the Lynn school system and will coach the defensive line.
Velasquez will be the special teams coordinator and he’ll help Carroll with the running backs and defensive backs. He graduated from Lynn Tech. Fiore, who works at Classical, graduated with Carroll. He was a standout wide receiver as a senior. He’ll coach the wide receivers. Fiore was on Holey’s staff the last two years.
Haberek graduated from English and went on to play at year at St. Anselm College (starting on the offensive line). He’ll work with the offensive line. Griffin graduated from English in 2005. He works at the General Electric and also coaches various youth sports. He’ll help out with the wide receivers.
Carroll’s brother, Steve Carroll, will work with the freshmen and help out on the defensive line on varsity. He played baseball and football at St. Mary’s, graduating in 2010. He’ll work with the tight ends. Mullins, a 2004 Classical graduate, played football, basketball and baseball in high school. He went on to attend UMass Dartmouth and he currently coaches the Lynn Legion baseball team. Mullins will coach the running backs. Molea will also be in the mix, but Carroll wasn’t sure on his role at this point.
“I’m really looking forward to my first season at the helm,” Carroll said. “It’s nice to get back into high school football.”
With a new staff and a new offensive and defense scheme coming in, Carroll only scheduled one game scrimmage and it’s against Wakefield the second Friday after camp. The Bulldogs will open their season against Swampscott, a matchup that will pit two new head coaches against each other. Swampscott is coached by Bob Serino, who replaced long-time coach Steve Dembowski. The game is Saturday, Sept. 12, at Blocksidege Field.
Week 2 will feature an interesting matchup with the Bulldogs playing St. Mary’s.
“I can’t think of the last time English and St. Mary’s played a regular season game,” Carroll said. “I have a tremendous amount of respect for Coach (Matt) Durgin.”
Winthrop, Beverly, Marblehead and Peabody round out the first seven games.