French named new Derby/O'Brien Tech coach (updated)
French, who served as the Red Raiders’ defensive coordinator this past season, replaces Carmen DiCenso, who retired at the end of the 2009 season after compiling a 4-6 in the co-op's first year in the Naugatuck Valley League.
The seven-member selection committee, which included Derby athletic director Joe Orazietti and BOE member Andrew Mancini, nominated French, who played football and baseball for the Red Raiders, to be the school’s next coach.
“It was a committee decision,” Orazietti said. “We felt he was the best candidate, the best fit for Derby. He’s an outstanding young man. He came up through the system. I think he’s going to be a good fit.”
Board of Education member Kim Krieger, whose son Ray, a sophomore, is the co-op’s starting quarterback, applauded the committee for its thorough selection process.
“The process was comprehensive,” Krieger said. “The committee did a tremendous job in pulling out a highly qualified candidate. We wish Mr. French tremendous success, and lots of luck here. We think he’s going to do a fine job for this program.”
DiCenso, who coached for six seasons starting in 2004, said he suggested French to Orazietti when DiCenso announced his retirement. However, DiCenso was not apart of the selection committee.
“As I told Joe I was retiring,” DiCenso said, “he wanted to know if I wanted to name anyone to take over and I told him George. He’s very knowledgeable, and very dedicated, and I think he deserves a chance to be the head coach.”