Less than two weeks after relieving head football coach John Rafferty of his position, the North Andover High School administration decided to reinstate him today for another run on the gridiron.
In 12 seasons as head coach, Rafferty led the Knights to a potent record of 81-49, but sources indicated he had a falling out with administration because of his handling of a couple of off-field incidents this past season, which ultimately led to his dismissal.
In a phone interview with the Globe, North Andover Principal Carla Scuzzarella said the school was making the right decision rehiring Rafferty.
"Some of the issues is that people don't know what the reasons were [for Rafferty's release], but any concerns there are, we all believe we can move forward from," Scuzzarella said. " this is about my students," said Scuzzarella, who noted the positive impact coach Rafferty had on players both present and past.
"Over the past two weeks, I have had many conversations with students at the school and graduates, and they all felt very respectful of their coach. It compelled me to spend more time considering the position," Scuzzarella said.
"We believe it's what best for our student athletes, and the rest is secondary. ... Having coach Rafferty stay on as football coach is a solid, positive choice."
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- Craig Larson: A native of West Springfield (Leo Durocher anyone? Tim Daggett?) and Curry College graduate (a proud Colonel!), Larson is the sports editor for the Globe's regional sections: South, West and North, as well as a frequent contributor on the college beat. Abington to Xaverian: it all starts with the schools. Have a compelling story idea? Contact him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeLars.
- Zuri Berry: Berry attended the same high school as sports legends O.J. Simpson and Joe DiMaggio. (Guess which one is his hero.) He's a South Boston resident (formerly of Eastie) and the editor of the High School Sports blog as well as the go-to-guy for everything high school sports on Boston.com. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @GlobeSchools for all of the latest updates.
Then there are our winter correspondents:
- Emily McCarthy | @EmilyMcCahthy | BPS correspondent
- Jake Fischer | @GlobeFischer | Boys basketball
- Michelle Fenelon | @michfenelon | Girls basketball
- Andrew MacDougall | @Andy_MacDougall | Boys hockey
- Liz Torres | @etorres446 | Girls hockey
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