Allegations of emotional abuse by former West Haven boys basketball coach Harry Bosley against his players have been “unsubstantiated” according to West Haven Superintendent of Schools Neil C. Cavallaro.
In a letter obtained by Hearst Connecticut Media dated May 23, Cavallaro stated, “I am pleased to report that the allegations of emotional abuse were unsubstantiated.” These allegations were brought to the administration’s attention back in mid-January. At that time, Bosley, in the midst of his 16th season as head coach and 24th overall with the program he once played for (1976 graduate), was put on administrative leave pending an investigation.
In the midst of that four-month wait, Bosley went from making certain he was both cleared of wrongdoing and able to return to his coaching position to just being cleared of wrongdoing. He said he made the decision to resign earlier this month and it became official last week.
“After receiving the letter from Neil Cavallaro, superintendent of West Haven Public Schools, acknowledging allegations of emotional abuse against me were unsubstantiated, I have chosen to resign as boys basketball coach,” Bosley said in a statement, also obtained by Hearst Connecticut Media.
West Haven made the CIAC state tournament in 13 of his 16 seasons and also won two division titles under Bosley, a youth coordinator at the Celentano School in New Haven.
“More importantly than success on the court, my players have went on to become successful men,” Bosley stated. “There are some parents who asked for additional playing time for their child or want them to be able to play a certain way, but that’s not what makes a team and not what keeps a team together. They must learn to trust the coach and his guidance. There is only about a .5 percent chance that a child will get a Division I scholarship out of high school. I never sought to kill anyone’s dreams, I just wanted my players to understand, that when the ball stops bouncing, you should have a backup plan.”
Bosley had very little comment beyond his statement. He cited his age – he will turn 60 on Sunday – for part of the reason why he decided not to return. “I spent the last two to three months going back and forth (of wanting or not wanting to coach at West Haven). It’s time for me to make the transition. I’m done coaching.”
Cavallaro also stated that Bosley “was a role model and mentor for a countless number of student-athletes.”
Bosley also thanked several people in his statement, Three are family members: his mom Elsie, brother Scott and son Harry III, better known as Scooter when he played for and coached alongside his dad. He also thanked Scot X. Esdaile, president of the Connecticut NAACP, and Stanley Chambers, his longtime assistant who served as interim coach during Bosley’s absence.
Jon Capone, West Haven’s athletic director, declined to comment on the matter, but did say he and Cavallaro “will get together to decide when the posting of the job will occur.”