Sports

Coupeville selects Maggio to head football program

Tony Maggio - --
Tony Maggio
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Coupeville High School looked down the line to find a new football coach.

Tony Maggio, the Wolves' offensive and defensive line coach the past two seasons, was selected Monday, June 4, as an interim head coach to replace Jay Silver who resigned last fall after two years at the helm.

Silver began a full-time teaching job in Mount Vernon this year and was recently hired as its football coach. He said not being able to land a teaching job in Coupeville, the commute from Mount Vernon each day and an illness in his family were among the reasons he stepped down after the 2011 season.

Coupeville Athletic Director Lori Stolee said Maggio was "the best candidate for the job." She added, "He knows the kids, he knows the community. He has already shown the abilithy to excel, recruiting 38 kids and starting spring camp."

Maggio, in addition to being Coupeville's line coach the past two years, coached in the Oak Harbor Youth Football League for eight years, five as head coach of the senior team (13 and 14 year olds). He was an assistant at Oak Harbor High School for two years, including the Wildcats' state championship run in 2006 under then head coach Dave Ward.

Maggio said, "Dave Ward is not only still a very good friend of mine, he is the one of the finest coaches I have ever been around. Dave is always under control, and the kids feel that even when things are not going right, he will right the ship."

He added, "Jay Silver and I have also become good friends, and I often call him for advice or just to do some chalk talk. He has such a passion for these kids and teaching them valuable life lessons. Craig Nurvic (an Oak Harbor assistant) is always willing to help me with anything; he is a high energy guy and his kids play hard for him."

Ward said of Maggio: "Coach Maggio's positive energy will be infectious. While he was an assistant coach for Oak Harbor High School, his ideas and timely input contributed to the success of those teams. He really enjoys the opportunity to help others better understand and perform in the game of football. Tony will keep the schemes for offense and defense relevant and manageable for the high school athlete. He recognizes that coaches often try to do too much and therefore never reach the necessary level of player confidence. Coach Maggio realizes that the head coach has many duties and one of them is to maintain poise while under pressure."

Silver said, “Tony will be a great coach for those kids. He truly cares about the kids and loves the sport of football. They will learn sound, fundamental football as well as character and integrity...My onlyconcern about them selecting him was what took them so long to do so; my opinion is that it should have been done long ago.”

Maggio's new coaching staff includes holdover assistant Dustin Van Velkinburgh who will be the defensive coordinator. Former Oak Harbor players Josh Higbee and Andy Haag will coach wings and fullbacks, and Nick Asinsin, who played in Hawaii, will take over the line.

Maggio hopes to build on the off-season weight program Silver started and to increase interest in middle-school football.

He said, "We are already seeing the number of middle school kids participating in football growing. They are excited to play for Coupeville."

Maggio said one of his goals is for his players to "to compete in everything we do, every play, every practice, and in every drill."

Another goal is to field a junior varsity team, which will require an increase in numbers.

He said the Wolves will run the wing offense: "It gives us the best chance against teams that may be bigger or faster, and by utilizing the misdirection we should be able to run the ball well this year."

At the close of the 2011 season, parents raised concerns about Coupeville's schedule and having to compete against schools more than twice its size. The district and Cascade Conference listened and adjusted the schedule.

Maggio said, "Our AD and principal really went to bat for both the parents and our team. I love our schedule, it puts us playing teams our own size or small 2A teams."

Coupeville's spring camp, under the direction of Maggio, is underway and runs through June 15.

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