Boston High School: Brian Vaughan

Early Sunday morning, Boston English two-way star Emmanuel Almonte gave a verbal commitment to the University of Maine, just before he headed back to Boston from his two-day official visit on the Orono, Maine, campus.

The last two years, Almonte has been one of the state's most productive quarterbacks, leaving the Blue & Blue program with a career average of 10.1 yards per carry, over 5,000 offensive yards, and this past fall recording 98 tackles and seven interceptions at cornerback.

Still, the 5-foot-10, 180-pound Almonte didn't too get many looks; his pledge today to Maine, his only D1 scholarship offer, was about opportunity.

"Other schools considered me too small, or not what they were looking for," Almonte told this evening.

So then, what did Maine, one of the steadier powers among the Division 1 FCS programs in the Northeast, see in him?

"I guess the way I carry myself. I'm serious about the game," Almonte said. "I always give it 100 percent. When I met with [head coach Jack] Cosgrove, he felt that in our conversation. I told them I'll play any position they ask me, just give me the opportunity."

Almonte offered a few more comments tonight on his commitment:

Deciding factors: "Just when they paired us with our player hosts, they were mad cool. It felt like family the second I got there. It's a real welcoming place, the campus is big, they have great football, and the coaching staff is amazing. I met Coach Cosgrove, I've only known him for a few days and I'm pretty impressed."

What Maine liked about him, and where he'll fit: "They liked how diverse of a player I was. They see me as an athlete; they've been talking about how I could play receiver or corner, bounce around. Right now, they see me as a corner. I might switch, but I don't know yet -- which I don’t have a problem with at all."

On being the first English player under coach Brian Vaughan to go D1: "I wouldn’t be able to get there without him, without [assistant coach Tom] Lamb. I feel privileged, you know, because it's tough to get exposure in the city. There's not a lot of guys that get the opportunity to play D1. There are guys that will look up to me in future and strive fot that. That’s what people want in high school football, they want that D1 school, hopefully we can get more city guys looing forward to maybe doing the same thing."

On Maine's history of player development: "It was big, it intrigued me a lot. When I talked to Coach Cosgrove, he told me how at UMaine they usually get guys that are usually overlooked, and develop them into big time players 3-4 years down the line. I feel I'm not at the best I can be yet. I'm excited to see where UMaine takes me in 3-4 years."

Boston English's Almonte commits to UMaine

January, 25, 2015
Jan 25
Boston English senior quarterback/defensive back Emmanuel Almonte has given a verbal commitment to the University of Maine, head coach Brian Vaughan told this morning.

The 5-foot-10, 180-pound Almonte was one of the best dual-threat quarterbacks the Bay State had to offer this fall, amassing over 3,300 offensive yards and 23 touchdowns as the Blue & Blue went 7-4, falling in the first round of the MIAA Division 6 North tournament. He also recorded 98 tackles and seven interceptions on defense.

In two years leading the offense under Vaughan, Almonte recorded 5,684 yards of offense and 43 touchdowns. That includes 3,337 yards on the ground, averaging 10.1 yards a carry for his career.

Almonte is heading to Maine on a partial scholarship. He was also considering Bryant and Stonehill at the time of his commitment.

English's Brian Vaughan named Patriots Coach of Week

December, 3, 2013
After beating Thanksgiving rival Boston Latin for the first time since 1997, thanks to a thrilling game-winning touchdown pass with time expired, first-year Boston English head coach Brian Vaughan was named New England Patriots Coach of the Week today.

Here is the official release from the Patriots:

Boston English High School’s Brian Vaughan has been named this week’s New England Patriots High School Coach of the Week in recognition of his team’s 14-12 come-from-behind victory over rival Boston Latin on Thursday, Nov. 28, at Harvard Stadium. Trailing 12-8 late in the fourth quarter, Boston English capped a 78-yard drive by connecting on a 7-yard touchdown pass with no time remaining to earn their first victory over Boston Latin since 1997. The New England Patriots Charitable Foundation will donate $1,000 to Boston English’s football program in Vaughan’s name in recognition of his Coach of the Week selection.

Patriots and Pro Football Hall of Fame linebacker Andre Tippett, the team’s Executive Director of Community Affairs, visited Coach Vaughan’s team on Tuesday, Dec. 3, at Boston English High School. The visit and check presentation will be featured on the Patriots weekly television magazine show, “Patriots All Access,” which airs at 7 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 6, on WBZ-TV in Boston and will be available immediately after on

This is the 18th year in which the Patriots join the National Football League in conducting the High School Coach of the Week program, which recognizes outstanding high school coaches and promotes youth football throughout New England. Tippett oversees the program as part of the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation’s commitment to youth football initiatives.

“Congratulations to Coach Brian Vaughan and his team,” Tippett said. “Boston English staged an incredible comeback by converting on a last-second touchdown pass to pull off the upset and beat Boston Latin for the first time in more than 20 years. This was a historic win for the Bulldogs.”

At the end of next week, one high school coach will be named the New England Patriots High School Coach of the Year and will receive an additional $2,000 contribution toward the school’s football program.

For the third straight year, Tippett has taken the award on the road and visited the schools that benefit from the program. This year is also the third year the Patriots will accept nominations for High School Coach of the Week. Anyone who knows a high school football coach in New England who has a great week or reaches a personal career milestone is encouraged to submit a nomination to

The New England Patriots Charitable Foundation is the non-profit through which the Patriots support charitable and philanthropic organizations throughout New England. This support comes in the form of direct grants, in-kind donations and player appearances. The foundation assists a variety of charitable organizations and programs throughout New England by supporting their educational, family and health initiatives.

Football Notes: High praise for breakout candidates

August, 26, 2013
A few notes and observations from the first week of MIAA preseason football:

Lofty, Loyte-y Comparisons: It's probably the worst-kept secret at St. John's Prep that junior tight end Jake Burt had one of the best summers in the program. All summer long, the 6-foot-4, 224-pound Lynnfield native dazzled in passing leagues and 7-on-7 tournaments, out-muscling defenders on 50/50 balls and boxing out others on goal line plays.

All summer long, coaches at the Prep program have raved about his development; and melded with his prowess on the school's basketball and volleyball teams, many are projecting highly for Burt, who is entering his first season as full-time starter after serving in part-time duty with the varsity last fall.

But perhaps no praise yet has been as high as the name head coach Jim O'Leary dropped on Tuesday morning, following a press conference to introduce the school's new baseball coach. Making a comparison to former great Jon Loyte -- an All-American who starred at Vanderbilt and Boston College, and had a brief cup of coffee with the New York Giants in 2010 -- O'Leary was blunt.

"I love Jon Loyte, but he [Burt] is more athletic," O'Leary said. "He's not as physically imposing as Jon was. Now, he weighed in last night [Monday, Aug. 19] at 6-4-1/2, 224 pounds, [and] he ran a 4.8 40. I thought that was impressive last night."

Burt dabbled last year in an H-back role, lining up both in the backfield and on the perimeter, and also took some snaps at quarterback in "Wildcat" packages. Expect him to take a similar role this fall, as the Eagles try to live up to their preseason billing as the state's No. 1 team and capture a second straight Division 1 title in the first year of a true MIAA State Championship.

It could be a similar situation to what St. John's of Shrewsbury had in 2010 with Richard Rodgers, the monster tight end/defensive end currently entering his third season at Cal. The 6-foot-4 Rodgers lined up both in the slot and split out wide, creating a matchup problem compounded with the added running threat of quarterback Dan Light, a converted tight end who is now manning a similar spot at Fordham.

"It's not our first rodeo here, we're probably going to use the talents that our people have," O'Leary said. "I think that you saw that situation last year, running some wildcat stuff. The trouble is, he sets the edge so well blocking, that it's going to be difficult to take him out of that tight end position. And his ability because he's 6-foot-4-1/2, to be split out as a wideout, similar to what St. John's Shrewsbury did with the kid that went to Cal, Rodgers, they used to split him out.

"It's a good matchup for us out there. Honestly, as weird as this sounds, we're probably gonna have to throw the ball more than we did last year. We need to take people out of the box."

High remarks from a former coach: One week of preseason in the books, and senior transfer Joe D'Onofrio is already making his presence felt at Everett High, scoring twice in yesterday's scrimmage with Lynn English. That comes as no surprise to his former coach at Pope John XXIII, which has since co-oped its program with Chelsea due to lack of numbers.

"You can quote me, Joey’s a stud. He’s a stud, man," said Brian Vaughan, now the head coach at Boston English. "Not a lot of people know about him, people try telling me he's not gonna play at Everett, and I laugh. I'm shocked he was with me at Pope John -- he's a stud. Some of the things he's done for me the last two years is just ridiculous. He's a perfect fit for them."

After his freshman season at Everett, D'Onofrio transferred across town to Pope John, and made his impact felt immediately in Vaughan's patented spread attack. In D'Onofrio's sophomore season of 2011, he ranked second on the team in receiving behind ESPN Boston All-State selection Malcolm Brown, while also rushing for 1,106 yards on just 105 carries.

Last fall, D'Onofrio earned Catholic Central Small MVP honors after carrying 174 times for 1,356 yards and 16 scores. Offensively, blessed with high-4.5 speed, he got touches in every skill position, including quarterback; defensively, he was just as vicious, making downhill plays from both the safety and outside linebacker spots.

Among the most talented players he's worked with in his two-plus decades of coaching, Vaughan recalls back to his time as an assistant at his alma mater Lynn English, and to former defensive tackle Matt Curtis, an athletic savant who overcame dramatic hardships to captain Harvard's football team in 2008.

"[Joe] would always wow you on offense, but when he'd come upfield from an outside linebacker or safety spot, he comes up and he's laying the wood," Vaughan said. "I've been coaching high school sports for a long time, and he's up there with my favorite athletes. He’s up there with Matt Curtis from the early 2000's. Obvioulsy he was a defensive tackle, but his athletic ability was crazy. He was a defensive tackle that returned kicks for us."

So what should folks in Everett expect from D'Onofrio this fall?

"What they should expect is someone who will work hard and do whatever it takes to win," Vaughan said. "He's definitely a team player, whatever you ask him to do he's gonna do it 120 miles an hour. Personally, I expect nothing but a lot of good things over there. [Everett head coach] John DiBiaso does an excellent job with the talent that he has, and Joe is going to fit right in and continue to have the success he's had at the high school level."

Secret ingredient? The first touchdown of No. 21 Needham's preseason came from a name familiar to the hardwood.

John Madsen, the 6-foot-6 senior star forward for the Rockets' basketball squad, is back out for football for the first time since his freshman year. You could say he's made his impact felt already, scoring the first of two Rockets touchdowns in Saturday's scrimmage with Newton South, hauling in a pass from senior quarterback Ryan Charter.

Needham is one of those programs that typically draws unique crossover talent, led this year by Mike Panepinto, a 2,000-yard rusher last fall who is committed to UMass for lacrosse. Two years ago, lacrosse star Mark Riley was a stud on the gridiron, stretching the field vertically as a flex tight end to earn ESPN Boston All-State honors.

Basketball backgrounds typically translate well to the tight end position -- see Tony Gonzalez, Antonio Gates, and Jimmy Graham at the NFL level. It's a work in progress, but you can't teach size, and so far Madsen has demonstrated a wide catching radius. He will likely stick at wide receiver, and won't play defense.

"He can catch, and he’s tall, and in terms of playing wide receiver those are two very good intangibles," Rockets head coach David Duffy said. "If we can get him up to speed on the offense...I'm hoping he improves every week, but he’s working hard at it. He's gonna be another weapon we can utilize, because everybody is going to be keying on Mikey [Panepinto]."

Boston English taps Vaughan as new football coach

January, 24, 2013
Pope John XXIII's Brian Vaughan confirmed to tonight that he has been named the new head football coach at Boston English High.

Vaughan is a 1992 graduate of Lynn English and played four years at Northeastern University. He was on Lynn English's coaching staff from 2000-2008, serving as offensive coordinator the final four seasons of his tenure. In four years as head coach at the Everett-based Pope John, he went 30-9.

For Vaughan, coaching in the Boston City League has been "a dream of mine", admitting that it will be challenging but fun -- "I think the challenge will be worth something," he said.

English's struggles as of late are well-documented. When the Bulldogs beat New Mission this past fall in Week 2, it was their first non-forfeit win over an opponent since 2009. They started this past year off 3-2, but finished with five straight losses. Still, the future looks bright.

"I feel that way [coaching in the city "a dream"] for the simple fact that I think Boston has huge potential to be...I think it's a sleeping giant," Vaughan said. "Not to be an Everett or one of those big-time programs, but I think there's so much talent in the City of Boston. I think it's a great opportunity to help build pride in the City of Boston football-wise. I'd love to be a part of that."

Vaughan was known for his spread principles during his time at Pope John, which included a record-breaking career for wide receiver Malcolm Brown. Brown finished his career with 192 receptions for 3,447 yards and 44 touchdowns, and 56 total scores, and was named to ESPN Boston's All-State Team in 2011. Vaughan said he plans on bringing the same philosophy to English with a balanced attack between run and pass.

For the last two seasons, English has also been aided by the presence of the legendary Tom Lamb, who went 248-65-2 over a span of four decades between Natick and Norwood, winning four Super Bowls and sending several players on to the NFL, most notably Alfred Fincher and brothers Doug and Darren Flutie. Vaughan played under Lamb at Northeastern, where he was Barry Gallup's offensive coordinator, and plans on retaining him.

"Tom is a friend of mine, he was a second father to me when I was at Northeastern," Vaughan said. "He was a father away from my father, we built a great relationship in those years. Coach Lamb and coach Barry Gallup, they were the ones who gave me the opportunity to play college football. A lot of schools looked at my height, my 40 time and weren't too impressed. But coach Lamb and coach Gallup gave me the opportunity to play college football.

"I'll always owe Coach Lamb for that. His knowledge of the game, his history alone as a football coach in Massachusetts, he's gonna make me that much better of a coach. I'm not quite sure yet what the titles will be [for assistants], we're gonna sit down and figure that stuff out soon."

Recap: Boston Cathedral 16, Pope John 12

October, 29, 2011
READING, MA – Against Pope John XXIII, Boston Cathedral converted on two separate two-point conversions that helped the Panthers edge the Knights, 16-12, as well as keep their undefeated season alive.

“Our kids kept their composure [all game],” said Cathedral head coach Duane Sigsbury. “We’ve been an unbelievable offense all year, they’ve been an unbelievable offense all year [too], but offense wins games, defense wins championships, and I thought that our defense was jus unbelieavable.”

Knights quarterback Rob McMaster (13 of 24, 152 yards, 1 TD, 3 INT), began the game with a one-yard score, before Malcolm Brown’s two-point conversion rush failed. The Knights (5-3) then registered their final touchdown of the game during the opening minutes of the second quarter, as McMaster connected with Brown on a five-yard touchdown pass before once again, the team’s two-point conversion failed.

“We just couldn’t get those going,” Pope John head coach Brain Vaughan said. “That’s actually been our thing all year. Our kicking game isn’t where we would like to be, so it forces [us] to go for two, and today, we [weren’t] able to punch [them] in.”

The Panthers (8-0) immediately responded on the ensuing possession, as quarterback Matthew Owens (2 of 5, 46 yards) sprinted past the Knights defense for a 65-yard score, followed by a successful two-point conversion.

Owens then scored the final touchdown of the contest with his feet again, a 46-yard scamper, and connected with Carlos Bermudez on the team’s second two-point conversion giving the Panthers a 16-12 lead, and eventually the game too.

Owens tears up the defense: Owens not only completed two-of-five passes, but also rushed for 183 yards on 17 carries, and finished the game with two touchdowns.

“We all stepped up as a team. We carried each other through it, especially that last three minutes, we battled,” said Owens. “We battled. We’ve been through this adversity before against Pope John Hyannis, [and] we were going through the same thing- nothing new to us, so we played like we played that game. We battled through it.”

“Matt’s unbelievable,” said Sigsbury. “Matt just made unbelievable player after unbelievable play. He’s a heck of an athlete, and he’s going to be a great college football player.”

Panthers Defense Smothers: The Knights passing and rushing game struggled against a physical Panthers defense, especially in the second half.

“The picks probably killed us, we shouldn’t have probably went deep [like we did] on first downs, but [there] were some good chances out there,” said McMaster.

Sigsbury commented about his team’s defensive performance by saying, “The kids are just relentless on defense, we work very hard in ball drills every day. Going to the ball in the air and our kids just do an awesome job of listening to what we tell them as coaches and they execute it.”

No second half momentum: After a rather exciting first two quarters, the second half featured both squads struggling to maintain any sort of momentum. The Knights and Panthers moved the ball into their opponent’s zones, but couldn’t overcome various false starts or holdings, which derailed numerous offensive series.

“One of the things that we talked about at halftime was maintain, and controlling the ball – keeping the ball,” said Vaughan. “Unfortunately, we threw an interception, [and] those things happen.”

PJX (5-3) 6 6 0 0 — 12
CTH (8-0) 0 16 0 0 — 16

First Quarter
P – Rob McCaster 1-yard run (run failed)

Second Quarter
P – Malcolm Brown 5 pass from McMaster (pass failed)
C – Matthew Owens 65 run (Owens run)
C – Owens 46 run (Carlos Bermudez pass from Owens)

Northeast pitches 6th shutout to advance

December, 1, 2010
LOWELL, Mass. – Northeast Regional quarterback Donato Dipietrantonio called it his team’s most complete game of the season, and it would be hard to argue otherwise.

Northeast scored in every quarter and posted its sixth shutout of the season Tuesday night, when it advanced to the Division 4A Super Bowl by dominating Pope John 42-0 at Cawley Stadium.

Dipietrantonio tossed three touchdown passes, and Bobby Novello added two touchdowns on the ground in the victory. Northeast held Pope John to 109 yards of total offense (7 yards rushing).

“Don’t let the score fool you -- they’re a good football team,” Dipietrantonio said. “We came to play. We’ve had a lot of scores like that, but that was definitely our most complete performance. Great football team. Great coaching.”

Northeast even recovered three onside kicks, two of which came in the second half when Pope John was limited to two offensive possessions.

Northeast, which improved its record to 10-2, led 14-0 after one quarter, 22-0 at halftime and 36-0 entering the fourth. The loss dropped Pope John’s record to 8-3.

“I knew they were going to score points,” Pope John coach Brian Vaughan said. “Offensively, the game didn’t go as we planned. We had trouble moving the ball in the first half, and in the second half we didn’t really have the ball. We thought we were going to have to score (a lot) of points, and we didn’t score any. That’s the way it goes sometimes.”

Pope John also committed four turnovers, three of which were interceptions.

Northeast will face Brighton in Saturday’s 4A Super Bowl. Brighton advanced by beating West Bridgewater 36-13 Tuesday night.

Pope John gained 30 yards on 20 plays in the first half. The Tigers had minus-16 yards rushing through the first two quarters.

“We have a very big, dominating defensive line,” Northeast coach Don Heres said. “It’s all a matter of preparation and them being coachable. This team is very coachable.”

Northeast put the game out of reach in the third quarter, when Dipietrantonio tossed two TD passes to Corey Thurell. The first was a 20-yard pass with 7:29 left in the third, and the second was a 41 yard pass with 5:26 to play in the quarter.

Dipietrantonio completed 5 of 7 passes for 85 yards and was intercepted once. Mike Cross caught Dipietrantonio’s other touchdown pass, which covered nine yards. When Dipietrantonio added the two-point conversion Northeast had a 22-0 lead with 1:28 left in the first half.

Northeast passed the ball 48 times in its first 11 games.

“He doesn’t have gaudy numbers, but he can throw the ball,” Heres said. “We don’t throw the ball very often, but he runs the show. We grind it out and when they bring everyone up we try to throw it over the top. It happened a couple times tonight.”

Novello gained 126 yards on 14 carries. He’s run for 1,244 yards and 16 touchdowns this season.

Pope John quarterback Malcolm Brown-Simpson completed 14 of 25 passes for 110 yards.

“We played a better team and the scoreboard showed it,” Vaughan said.

PJ 0 0 0 0 -- 00
NE 14 8 14 6 -- 42

1st quarter
N – Brandon Sullivan 5 run (Mike Cross rush)
N – Bobby Novello 39 run (rush failed0

2nd quarter
N – Cross 9 pass from Donato Dipietrantonio (Dipietrantonio rush)

3rd quarter
N – Corey Thurell 20 pass from Dipietrantonio (pass failed)
N – Thurell 41 pass from Dipietrantonio (Novello rush)

4th quarter
N – Novello 16 run (rush failed)
N – Jack Murphy 39 run (rush failed)