- Coach: Tom Shea (5th year, 25-19)
- Conference: SCC Division I West
- Playoff Class: LL (901 boys enrollment)
- Home: Will use Fairfield Ludlowe and Fairfield Warde for home games this season.
- 2013 Record: 11-3 (Class LL finalists)
- 2014 Kickoff: Stamford, Sept. 11, 7 p.m. (at Warde)
- Captains: John DelliSanti, Arthur Mansolillo, Anthony Palazzolo, Colton Smith
- Colton Smith, 6-1, 185, Sr., QB
- John DelliSanti, 6-2, 202, Sr., WR
- Anthony Palazzolo, 6-6, 318, Sr., OL
- Arthur Mansolillo, 6-0, 278, Sr., OL
- Joe Ganim, 5-10, 195, Sr., RB
- Allen Gibson, 6-1, 178, Sr., RB
- Brendan Beiser, 5-10, 145, Jr., WR
- Connor Roche, 6-3, 265, Sr., OL
- Logan Clair, 5-9, 185, Sr., LB
- Colin Ihlefeld, 6-0, 202, Sr., CB
- Nick Franchuck, 6-1, 180, Jr., LB
- Jake Buckley, 6-1, 181, Sr., DB
- Jack Snopkowski, 5-9, 145, Sr., DB
- Will Lashar, 6-1, 220, Sr., DL
- Frank Lopez, 6-0, 285, Jr., DL
- Sam Opont, 6-1, 302, Jr., DL
Nick Crowle, FB/LB (1,056 rushing yards, 17 touchdowns, 109 tackles, two sacks, Register All-Area, All-State selection, now at Yale); Anthony Johnson, LB (109 tackles, two sacks); Max Trudeau, LB. (126 tackles, 11 sacks, caused five fumbles, Register All-Area selection); Tony Fox, OL/DL (Register All-Area selection, now at Fordham).
Fairfield Prep reached a state championship game last season for the first time since winning Class LL in 1988. The Jesuits were one half away from victory, leading 28-14 at the intermission. But Prep scored just six points in the second half, while Southington exploded for 38, including 24 in the fourth quarter, in the final two quarters to earn the title in comeback fashion.
That’s the bad news.
The good news: Prep is poised to make a return trip to the postseason. Smith, DelliSanti and Palazzolo are three of the state’s best players, and a big reason why expectations are once again high in Fairfield.
Smith, the Register All-Area quarterback last season, completed 111 of 190 passes for 1,708 yards and 10 touchdowns as a junior. Smith also guided the Jesuits down field on the ground, rushing 197 times for 1,899 yards and 29 touchdowns. An early-season injury to Ganim forced Smith to carry much of the load out of the backfield, but Ganim seems to be back at full-strength, which should add balance to the Prep offense. Ganim played in just six games, rushing 39 times for 319 yards and three touchdowns.
The Jesuits running game will benefit from the return of Palazzolo, Mansolillo and Roche on the line. Palazzolo has given a verbal to play at Boston College.
DelliSanti will lead the receiving corps after catching 45 passes for 935 yards and nine touchdowns, all team highs. Beiser made 12 catches for 187 yards and one score as a sophomore.
Prep lost three standouts (Fox, Johnson and Trudeau) on defense but there’s talent returning on that side of the ball. Snopkowski (46 tackles), Clair (37 tackles) and Ihlefeld (35 tackles) should all see their roles expanded this season. Palazzolo made 46 tackles and five sacks last season.
The schedule, as usual, is daunting. The Jesuits open against two FCIAC opponents (Stamford and St. Joseph). Prep lost a heart breaker to the latter last season. Then the Jesuits get into their SCC slate against what’s expected to be a very improved Notre Dame-West Haven squad. Games against Shelton, Hand, Cheshire, Xavier and West Haven are also on the docket.
- Sept. 12 — Stamford (at Ludlowe), 7 p.m.
- Sept. 20 — at St. Joseph, 1 p.m.
- Sept. 26 — Notre Dame-West Haven (at Ludlowe), 7 p.m.**
- Oct. 3 — at Branford, 7 p.m.**
- Oct. 10 — Shelton (at Warde), 7 p.m.*
- Oct. 17 — Hand (at Ludlowe), 7 p.m.**
- Oct. 24 — at Cheshire, 7 p.m.**
- Oct. 31 — at Amity, 7 p.m.*
- Nov. 7 — Hamden (at Warde), 7 p.m.*
- Nov. 14 — at Xavier, 7 p.m.*
- Nov. 27 — at West Haven, 10:30 a.m.**
* — division game
** — conference game