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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman


Chuck Priore out as Stony Brook’s head coach

Former head coach Chuck Priore waits in the tunnel with his team before its season finale against Albany on Saturday, Nov. 11. Priore was fired from his job on Monday morning. TIM GIORLANDO/THE STATESMAN

A press release sent out by Stony Brook Athletics has confirmed the dismissal of long-time head coach Chuck Priore.

After the worst two seasons in Stony Brook football history, Director of Athletics Shawn Heilbron has made the decision to move on from Priore. His removal from the position comes just one year into a highly-scrutinized three-year extension that he signed last summer, though it was not announced until two days before the 2022 season ended.

With the 2023 season still active for the rest of the Coastal Athletic Association’s (CAA) teams, Priore was scheduled for his usual time slot in the weekly coaches’ press conferences. The announcement came just an hour before his regularly-scheduled media availability.

Heilbron made the decision to oust Priore from his role and met with him on Sunday to inform him.

“When we met yesterday I told him we were making a change,” Heilbron said in an interview with The Statesman.

Heilbron confirmed that Priore has not been fully terminated from Stony Brook Athletics, but he is being reassigned to a different position within the organization. The two parties are yet to agree on a determined role but are in the process of figuring that out.

“I didn’t fire Chuck, we’ve simply made a change in leadership,” Heilbron said. “We’re working through the logistics of what all of that looks like. When Chuck and I met, I told him we were making a change, and he has the right to do due diligence on his end, as do we.”

Being a union employee, Priore’s contract makes things difficult for the department to cut ties entirely. His most-recent extension specifies a $675,000 buyout if he is fired after year one, which represents a likely deterrent for the University to terminate him entirely.

“As a state employee, as a member of the union, he has rights that make this an interesting situation,” Heilbron said. “So I want to make sure that he’s able to do that, but we are terming it as a change in leadership of the football program.”

Priore ran the show with Stony Brook football for 18 years and compiled a 97-101 overall record, becoming the winningest coach in the program’s relatively short history. He led the Seawolves to their first four Football Championship Subdivision playoff appearances ever in 2011, 2012, 2017 and 2018. They are currently mired in a five-year playoff drought and have endured five consecutive losing seasons, during which time they are 13-35, including 0-10 this year.

Priore never led Stony Brook to a CAA championship. The team’s last title was in 2012 when it belonged to the Big South Conference.

In Monday morning’s press release, Heilbron expressed gratitude towards Priore for his many years at the helm.

“I am grateful to Chuck for his 18 years of dedication to Stony Brook University and to the countless young men whose lives he has impacted,” Heilbron said. “Under his direction, our program earned multiple playoff appearances while sending our first wave of players into the NFL.”

In Priore’s absence, offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach Andrew Dresner will serve as the interim head coach as Heilbron looks to find the third football head coach in program history.

Updated on Nov. 13 at 4:25 p.m.

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About the Contributor
Mike Anderson, Sports Editor
Mike Anderson is the Sports Editor at The Statesman. He is a senior majoring in journalism with aspirations of becoming a sports journalist. His love of sports comes from his time spent as a baseball player. As a reporter for The Statesman, he has covered baseball, softball, football, men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s soccer, men's and women's lacrosse, women's volleyball and hockey. He has also interned at Axcess Sports as a high school and college baseball and softball reporter. He is a local product from Port Jefferson, N.Y. and is a diehard Mets, Jets, Nets and Islanders fan.
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