It’s a new season for Pat Keevins, one that brings a new school, a new role and new responsibilities.
After coaching Roy C. Ketcham High School to a league football title last season, Keevins has joined Poughkeepsie as the Pioneers’ offensive coordinator under head coach John Castellano.
“It’s a great fit,” said Keevins, who resigned from the Indians post to pursue a career in administration. “It’s a big change for me, stepping into an assistant role, which has been nice to not have to be the first person here and the last one to leave, or checking my email nonstop all summer.
“It’s been fun for me to just show up and actually coach and worry about the X’s and O’s and not all the extra stuff that comes along with being a head coach. It’s refreshing.”
Keevins led Wappingers Falls’ Indians to a 7-2 record last season, including a 5-1 league mark.
Castellano has been friends with Keevins and his family — the head coach attended his new coordinator’s wedding 11 years ago — and when the former Ketcham coach became available, Poughkeepsie’s head man was happy to welcome him into the fold.
“He made it clear that he was looking to maybe coach a little bit, take a back seat from being a head coach,” Castellano said. “He had some other things he wanted to get going, but he wanted to stay involved in the game. I said, ‘Hey, listen. I’d love to have you. It would be great.’ “
Poughkeepsie’s wing-T offense, Castellano said, will only be helped with Keevins’ innovative approach to the scheme.
“Some of the coaches who I know, and who Pat knows, said he was doing some great things with keeping the wing-T concept but getting a spread-type look to it. And that’s exactly what I wanted to do here; I wanted to get our kids in spacing,” Castellano said. “Pat and I sat and spoke, and I loved what he was doing. It was just a matter of convincing him to come on board.”
Troy Schoonmaker, among others, is happy Keevins came “on board” with his Pioneers.
Expected to be the Pioneers’ starting quarterback, Schoonmaker said his new coordinator has been “real good,” helping him individually and Poughkeepsie’s offense collectively since joining the program.
“He’s shown me a lot, helped me improve a lot, improving my game every day,” said Schoonmaker, a junior. “Between my arm, throwing the ball overhand, he’s helping me a lot.”
Sean T. McMann: firstname.lastname@example.org; 845-437-4826; Twitter: @journalsean