Derek Sininsky is a father to four children, but Wednesday night he wants to convey the message that he will be a father to the current St. John Vianney High School football players.
Sininsky, the former head football coach at Raritan, Monmouth Regional and Marlboro high schools, was named St. John Vianney High School’s head football coach, the school announced Monday afternoon. He said he will meet with the Lancers’ current players, the parents of the players and the assistant coaches Wednesday night.
Sininsky replaces Mark Ciccotelli, who St. John Vianney said in a press release Monday afternoon, has resigned. The Asbury Park Press obtained an e-mail Saturday night that was apparently sent Saturday afternoon by St. John Vianney athletic director Rich Lamberson to parents of players on the team and teachers in the school that said Ciccotelli was no longer the head coach.
“I’m being a dad really that night,’’ Sininsky said late Monday afternoon. “I’m kind of different now. My family is more involved with our decision-making. Our faith has a lot to do with it. We pray about it.’’
“I’m going to be a dad that night. It’s maybe going to be emotional. The kids definitely have emotions, as do parents, which is understandable. If I was a parent and had my kid in a situation like that. Obviously, there would be a concern.’’
The highly-successful Ciccotelli was St. John Vianney’s head coach for just one season. The Lancers, bolstered by the transfer of six players from four schools around the Shore Conference, including two from Matawan, went 10-1 last year.
They set a school-record for wins in a season, won the Shore Conference Class A Central championship for their first divisional title since 1982, advanced to the NJSIAA Non-Public Group III semifinal and recorded their first playoff win since the early 1980’s.
“I just want to let the kids know and the parents that we’re going to continue this thing,’’ Sininsky said. “I’m going to be there for them. I’m going to be a dad. I’m going to be a head coach. My role is to comfort these kids and just have them believe in me, our staff, our administration and look straight ahead one step at a time and let’s get after it and not look back. If the kids have questions, I want to be able to answer them right there. ’’
Sininsky is aware there is a chance some players and their families might lthink about transferring because of the coaching change.
“We’re a team and we’re going to be a program where our faith has a lot to do with it,’’ Sininsky said. “We are student athletes. To me, you have to love this school. You have to love the administration. It’s a great place to be.
“To me, I wouldn’t put my kid through that, where maybe, I should get out. I’m not that bad. I’m a good guy, a nice guy. My family is going to be around these guys the whole time, which we’re all excited about. It’s a place where I think it’s going to be great to be at.’’
Sininsky, who played scholastic football at Mater Dei Prep, was the head coach at Raritan for three seasons from 2001-2003, Monmouth in 2005 and Marlboro for five seasons from 2008-2012.
His career record is 30-60 overall, 16-14 at Raritan with a tri-Shore Conference Liberty Division championship in 2003, 5-5 at Monmouth and 9-41 at Marlboro, which has long been one of the Shore’s struggling programs. Lamberson was an assistant coach to him at Monmouth.
Sininsky said he hopes to have his coaching staff in place by Wednesday night and there will be some coaches from Ciccotelli’s staff on his staff. He also said he will keep the same spread offensive set St. John Vianney, led by quarterback and Boston College recruit Anthony Brown, ran with great success last year. He said the terminolgy will be the same.
Sininsky said the offense Ciccotelli utilized is the same one he has utilized in the past.
“‘I don’t want anything to make it more of a harder transition,’’ Sininsky said. “I want this to be as smooth as possible for them.
Before he came to St. John Vianney, Ciccotelli coached Freehold to NJSIAA Central Group III championships in 2008 and 2010, the only sectional titles that school has ever won and Neptune to a Central Group III championship in 2011 for that school’s first sectional title since 1998. He was also the head coach at Rahway for two seasons and a former assistant coach at both Keyport and Middletown South.
Steven Falk: 732-643-4267; email@example.com