Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Wesley Chapel names former Pasco QB Alford as Castelamare's successor

Wesley Chapel didn't have a huge pep rally for its new head football coach, but that doesn't mean the school was any less excited about its hire.

The school announced Monday night it had selected former Pasco quarterback Ben Alford to be the second head coach in program history. He replaces John Castelamare, who established the program when the school opened in 1999 and is in his final year of the Deferred Retirement Option Program.

Alford, 25, might best be remembered for his stellar career with the Pirates. He threw for 3,225 yards and 50 touchdowns as a three-year varsity starter from 2000-02.

Alford played at North Iowa Area Community College then transferred to Northern Iowa, where injuries stymied his career. Alford said he was forced to quit playing last year after suffering his 15th concussion.

Coaching was always part of his long-term plan.

"For me to get this opportunity, I'm not going to take it lightly," Alford said. "It's truly a blessing for me to get this job at my age."

While Alford's critics might point to his age as a drawback, athletic director Steve Mumaw noted Alford's energy and enthusiasm set him apart.

Alford sent the school a 60-page portfolio of his coaching plan.

"We're looking for someone to breathe new life into our program," Mumaw said. "With the questions we asked and his enthusiasm, it's clear he's the right person to do that."

Alford has been married three years (Ashley) and has two boys (Brayton, 2; Taylen, 6 months). He has been waiting tables at Ruby Tuesday's while working as an assistant coach at Iowa Area Community College, where he did everything from defensive coordinator to conditioning.

One of Alford's first tasks will be to select a staff. Mumaw said all assistant supplements will be advertised and current coaches are welcome to reapply.

Alford is in the process of obtaining a temporary teaching certificate so he can join the Wesley Chapel staff after he moves from Iowa.

In terms of football, Alford will try to revive what has been a stagnant program, which hasn't had a winning record since it went 7-3 in 2004.

"I don't think anybody would outwork Ben," said Ricky Thomas, who coached him at Pasco. "As a player, no one worked harder. … He was very loyal to me. With today's players he's young enough to be able to relate to them and understand them."

Izzy Gould can be reached at [email protected] or (813) 421-3886.

Wesley Chapel names former Pasco QB Alford as Castelamare's successor 02/08/10 [Last modified: Monday, February 8, 2010 11:14pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Cubs down Dodgers 3-2; force NLCS Game 5 Thursday

    Ml

    CHICAGO — Javier Baez snapped an 0-for-20 skid with two home runs, former Ray Wade Davis hung on for a six-out save and the Cubs avoided a sweep, holding off the Dodgers 3-2 Wednesday night in Game 4 of the NL Championship Series.

  2. Bucs' Vernon Hargreaves: 'I'm not making any plays'

    Bucs

    TAMPA — Eli Manning gathered his receivers together on the sideline during the Giants' Week 4 game against the Bucs and told them he planned to target the weakest link of the secondary all afternoon.

    Patriots receiver Chris Hogan gets position in front of Bucs cornerback Vernon Hargreaves for a 5-yard touchdown pass in New England’s win on Oct. 5.
  3. Lightning's J.T. Brown to stop anthem protest, focus on community involvement

    Lightning Strikes

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — Lightning wing J.T. Brown will no longer raise his first as a protest during the national anthem before games.

    J.T. Brown says he will work more with the Tampa police and groups that serve at-risk young people.
  4. Signs point to Jameis Winston dressing vs. Bills

    Sports

    TAMPA — The Bucs didn't sign another quarterback Wednesday, which would suggest they are confident that Jameis Winston can be active as a backup to Ryan Fitzpatrick on Sunday at Buffalo if he doesn't start.

  5. FSU doesn't feel need for ongoing reminder of last year's beatdown at Louisville

    Sports

    Of course Florida State remembers what happened against Louisville last year. The 63-20 loss was one of the worst defeats in Seminoles history.

    Louisville's Lamar Jackson looks back at the action from the sidelines during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Murray State, Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley)