Mike Brasile watched and learned as a football player and assistant coach for a good portion of his life.
Now, the 33-year-old Woodstock resident gets to run a program himself. Brasile, a 1999 Woodstock graduate, was named Hampshire’s head football coach on Friday, following Dan Cavanaugh, who is retiring after a 25-year run as the Whip-Purs head coach.
Brasile also will teach social studies at Hampshire. His employment should become official at the District 300 school board meeting on April 14.
“It’s been a lifelong goal to be a head coach, it’s something I’ve always wanted to do,” Brasile said. “I’ve wanted that opportunity to have a program of my own and to create life lessons for the players.”
Brasile has taught and coached at Leyden for the past two years after becoming a teaching cut casualty at Woodstock. He and his wife, Heidi, live in Woodstock and are expecting their first child in May.
Brasile coached the offensive line for Leyden coach Tom Cerasani last season. He worked on Woodstock coach Steve Beard’s varsity staff for five seasons, the last three as offensive coordinator. He also cited former Woodstock coach Ed Brucker and former Augustana coach Jim Barnes, both of whom he played for, as heavy influences on his football career.
“My experiences under coach Beard, coach Cerasani, [former] coach [Jim] Barnes at Augustana have prepared me,” Brasile said. “I still talk football with coach Brucker all the time. Those are great role models to look after. I feel like I had a lot to bring to the table for Hampshire. I hope I do a great job for them.”
Now in the Fox Valley Conference Fox Division, Brasile will coach against Beard each season.
Brasile was a two-way starter on the line for Woodstock’s 1997 Class 5A state championship team. He graduated in 1999 and played at NCAA Division I Ball State for one spring before transferring to D-III Augustana, where he started four years on the defensive line. Brasile was named All-College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin the last three years of college.
At Hampshire, Brasile expects to concentrate more on the offensive side.
The interview process which Brasile went through involved administrators, activity sponsors, teachers, coaches, football alumni, feeder program representatives and parents. Brasile also spoke with Cavanaugh and plans to meet with his predecessor when Cavanaugh returns from spring break.
“I want to talk about the successes and traditions,” Brasile said. “I hope we can carry on the success he had. He held that position a long time and had a lot of success.”