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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    Building A World Class Football Team

    The Stony Brook Seawolves have been hitting the gridiron for 22 seasons now, but their 23rd season will usher in more change than some fans might be able to wrap their minds around. Head coach Chuck Priore steps in as only the second person in the team’s history to hold that position and brings along an entirely new coaching staff to back him up. After six seasons at Trinity College, three of which saw the team hold an undefeated streak, Priore steps in to lead the Seawolves as they embark on the road to bigger and better things.

    Priore brings with him the experience of four consecutive New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) titles and a staff that is no stranger to success on the field. Joe Tricario comes on as defensive coordinator after eight years at Fordham University where his team ranked as the top defense in their league in 2002. The position of offensive coordinator is taken on by Jeff Behrman who spent several seasons at both Trinity College and Hofstra University. Damien Wrobleski is the offensive line coach. He served in the same position at Hofstra for two seasons. Wide receivers will be coached by Carlton Goff who has ten years of collegiate coaching experience under his belt, including three seasons as running back coach at Hofstra. Shawn Daignault serves as inside linebackers coach and Jason Martin will take on the defensive line. The secondary coaching position is filled by Ky Cowen who mentored rookie free agent Brandon McGowen, now with the Chicago Bears. Finally, Jon Woods returns as outside linebackers coach.

    On the field, the Seawolves will be led by captains Michael Cosentino, Assad Hafiz, Chris Tomasky, and Dan Michitsh. At wide receiver, Cosentino has seen action in every game from the 2003 season, and led the team in receptions last season. Hafiz returns for his final season at running back after joining the team last season during which he totaled 393 yards on the ground. Tomasky and Michitsh will lead the defense. Michitsh took over in the 2005 season after Tomasky was sidelined with an injury and led the team with 95 tackles.

    This season also welcomes the first recruiting class in the team’s history. With a shift in the Northeastern Conference (NEC) guidelines on the awarding of scholarships, the team was able to actively recruit players with the promise of full athletic scholarships, rather than the need-based awards that were previously offered. The Seawolves inked National Letters of Intent with 14 incoming freshman: Josh Auerback, Benjamin Clements III, Conte Cuttino, Jason Figorski, Cory Giddings, Anthony Hamilton, Jerome Johnson Jr., Donald Lee, Robert Montejo II, Emmet Phillips, Stephen Schwicke, Jefferson Santos, Tyler Santucci, and Chris Tyler. The players will be expected to back up their veteran teammates and challenge them to reach new levels in their play.

    The 2005 season saw the team take a share of the NEC championship for the first time in its history. The Seawolves have been an associate member of the NEC since 1999 and the 2006 season will be the final time that the team competes as part of the conference. In 2007, the team moves on to compete as a Division I-AA Independent. This will act as a stepping stone as Stony Brook attempts to make its way into the highest level of Division I-AA ball. The number of athletic scholarships offered by the team will increase incrementally over the next few seasons until it reaches the highest level allowed by the division.

    Scheduling changes for the next few seasons will also challenge the team as they hope to further elevate their level of play. The 2006 season includes non-conference games against Hofstra, University of New Hampshire, University of Massachusetts, and Georgetown University. In 2007, the Seawolves will face even tougher competition in Georgetown, Bucknell, Youngstown State, Monmouth, Hofstra, University of Albany, University of Richmond, Wagner, Central Connecticut State and Elon University. The Seawolves kick off the 2006 season with a game against Hofstra University at Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium, where they have played since 2002.

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