Since his departure from Cambridge in December, Paul Gonnella said he has been all over the country, around the clock, in search of the right coaching job. Finally, the most prominent virtue he expressed -– patience -– appears to have paid off.
Gonnella said has accepted a job last week at the University of North Carolina to be the football program’s Director of Player Personnel and Assistant Recruiting Coordinator.
The job offer would effectively end a four-month journey that Gonnella said spanned eight states and included a stint as an assistant coach for the U.S. Army All-American Game.
Last month, the Raleigh News & Observer reported that UNC got a commitment from former Cambridge wide receiver Joshua Adams, a top recruit in the class of 2009, who is now at Cheshire (Conn.) Academy.
Word filtered out in January that Adams had left Cambridge to attend the college preparatory school in the Nutmeg State.
Since hiring Butch Davis as its head coach in 2007, the Tar Heels have been considered a program on the rebound. They pulled in a top defensive line recruit, Marvin Austin, a year ago, and this year have signed six recruits labeled as four-star recruits on Rivals.com.
“It’s an unbelievable situation. I’m real excited,” Gonnella said. “I’m just going to work my butt off, and do the best I can for this school and this football program.”
After graduating from Salem State in 1999, Gonnella served as an assistant coach at Lovejoy (Ga.) High School from 2001-02, then jumped to Mississippi State for two years as a graduate assistant.
Most recently, Gonnella served as head coach at Cambridge Rindge & Latin starting in 2005, where he spearheaded the program's recent turnaround. The Falcons went 4-7 in his first season, before posting a 7-3 mark (but finishing third in the GBL behind both Everett and Waltham).
Last season, the Falcons went 7-4, but the season was marred by Gonnella's sudden and unexplained departure from the program late in the season. Gonnella stepped down as head coach after Everett hammered the Falcons, 42-6, on Thanksgiving Day.
Boston.com's Chris Forsberg contributed to this report
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