The Buccaneers are on a bye but that doesn't mean the High School Coach of the Week contest takes a break. The winner of Week Seven's Coach of the Week, presented by Tampa Electric, is Dale Caparaso, head coach at Dixie Hollins High School in St. Petersburg, Florida. Given the bye week, next Thursday, Caparaso will take a tour of AdventHealth Training Center as well as enjoy lunch at the facility and meet with Head Coach Bruce Arians. As part of the award, his program was also presented with a $2,000 grant from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Foundation for the Rebels football program.
What did it mean for you to be nominated and then win Coach of the Week?
Being nominated for the coach of the week is a tremendous honor that is passed on from the Bucs to our coaching staff. I have always felt it is an awesome thing the Bucs do for the local High School Football coaches. Just to be mentioned in the same breath with some of the other winners and the other coaches who have been nominated says a lot for our program. Our young men and coaches have worked very hard to gain respect as Dixie Hollins Football has struggled for 15-plus years and this is one of the ways our young men and staff can see the hard work and believing in the program does indeed pay off. Thank you for all you do.
How can the attached grant help your program?
As one of the few football programs in Pinellas County, we do not have a booster club to help support your young men and all the things we, as coaches, want to do for the players. Any money we earn is team earned and coaches earned. Simply put, we have to work very hard just to provide the items that are important to young student athletes. Pregame meals, t-shirts, paint for our field, needed equipment, along with a very long list of other items. This grant will be put towards our football banquet and gifts we provide all players at the banquet. We can now get items the athletes will be proud of and cherish for years to come.
What's most important to you as a coach and mentor to young players?
I have always believed and mention this to all younger coaches who interview for a position on our coaching staff that first and foremost, "We are here to save lives." Winning football games is the easy part of our job. Saving a student from going down the wrong path, not doing well in school and making bad choices is why we do what we do. The list of things we must do goes beyond the football field. We must be fathers to our players, friends to our players and most important of all positive role models to our players. It is our goal as a coaching staff to provide an environment that is concussive to helping our football players achieve the very highest levels of success on the field but more importantly in the classroom and in the community. When we achieve that goal, the wins take care of themselves. Being a leader and positive role model with very high character in the school environment and community is what we expect from all of our coaches. One of the very reasons we are currently enjoying the success of a great season is because all of our coaches have these very high standards.
If you know a coach that should be nominated, visit the Buccaneers website to nominate the next Buccaneers High School Coach of the Week, presented by Tampa Electric.