Meet Our Coaches
ECP Head Football Coach Dick Bell
Dick Bell’s background and accomplishments in football are numerous and outstanding. As a football player, as a football coach/recruiter and as a football executive, Dick has the reputation as “a person who makes things happen.”
Dick’s abilities on the field as either a player or coach have translated to successes in management as well. During a 14 year career that ended in 2000, Dick represented over 100 NFL players in their on and off field endeavors, including two first round draft picks and 6 time Pro Bowl linebacker Greg Lloyd of the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Dick, as General Manager of the Bay State Titans of the MLFS, was named The Executive of the Year in 1991 after the Titans led the league in attendance, players sent to the NFL, CFL or World League (21), as well as playing for the Conference championship. The Titans were coached by former New England Patriot player and current Atlanta Falcons Assistant, Ray "Sugar Bear" Hamilton.
Dick is also the Director of the Blue Chip Football Academies , events which are held each summer in Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and Georgia for high school players. Now in its seventh year, with over 150 college coaches participating, it has been a resounding success for the hundreds of players that have gone on to play at the college level because of the contacts made there.
Dick has coached at all levels, and the one constant is success.
College – As linebacker coach for Division 1AA Tennessee-Chattanooga of the powerful Southern Conference, players under Dick’s tutelage earned either first or second team All Conference in each of his years there. The ability to recruit is what truly separated Dick from the crowd as he personally signed a staggering 70% of the recruiting classes during his tenure. With help from the players he signed, Chattanooga went from a losing to a winning program within two years.
High School – As the head coach of Cardinal Gibbons High School in Raleigh, North Carolina, Dick guided a team that had a 1-32 record the previous three seasons to a 9-2 record in his first year. That turnaround was recognized in a state with over 300 schools as one of the greatest in history. Six of the players on that team went on to Division 1 or 1AA Programs and none had been recruited at all prior to Dick’s arrival.
Photo above shows Dick as Linebacker Coach at Chattanooga
A native of Massachusetts, Dick was the MVP of Dean Junior College in 1974 and went on to become a three time All Conference Player and All-American at the University of Rhode Island as a defensive end. Dick was also chosen to represent Team USA in the 1979 Can-Am Bowl Game which pitted the United States versus Canada in a nationally televised game. Dick started and helped the American squad to a resounding victory. After his college career ended, Dick was signed by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and later signed with the San Diego Chargers. Dick was inducted into the Dean Athletic Hall of Fame in 1991.
Photo shows Dick (2nd from left, kneeling) during his playing days for
Contact Dick via email firstname.lastname@example.org
Troy Davis - Assistant Head Coach and Defensive Coordinator
Now beginning his third season with East Coast Prep. Troy Davis has become, in Dick Bell's words, "indispensable." Dick is quick to add that "no one has contributed as much to the success of East Coast Prep as Troy has. He is a rock."
His background and experience speak volumes.
After serving as Hargrave head coach since 2010, Coach Davis became a major part of an unforeseen chain of events, The Hargrave Military Academy of Virginia, after playing prep football at the highest level for seventy years, made the difficult decision to drop PG football from their athletic program. With this decision Coach Davis immediately became one of the most sought after coaches in the country, with offers flooding in from all regions. Fortunately for East Coast Prep, Coach Davis's long association and friendship with Dick Bell made his decision a bit easier than it might otherwise have been. And he'll be with us for 2014 as well.
In terms of experience and accomplishments, it's nearly impossible to find someone on his level. In 2010-2011 he coached Hargrave to an undefeated 8-0 season and the PG Football Prep Championship. He knows how to win. But even more impressive is the talent level of the young men under his leadership and his ability to get them to the next level.
He has coached 111 players who've gone on to Division I or II scholarships. (He's also coached two players who were first round NFL draft choices.) But even more remarkable is the major conference breakdown: ACC (7), SEC (5), Big 12 (3), Big 10 (3) Big East (3), WAC (1), C-USA (3), and MAC (6). We seriously doubt there are any prep coaches anywhere who can match that record.
An outstanding administrator who knows how to get things done, Coach Davis also had a stellar career as a player. A First Team All State Selection during his playing days at Henry Snyder High School in New Jersey, he went on to earn a scholarship to play football at Penn State, graduating in 1989.
We at East Coast Prep couldn't be happier about having him with us for another year. We're sure his knowledge, energy, and enthusiasm will have a profound effect on the players under his tutelage.
Started at Hargrave in 2007 as an assistant coach and was appointed head coach by 2010
Served as Defensive Coordinator for the Army All-American Bowl (2007-2008)
Member of the Penn State Letterman Club
Received the seal of the Pennsylvania State Senate for being a member of the 1986 Penn State National Championship team.
Member of Penn State Teams that played in the Meadowland Kickoff Classic, the Orange Bowl, and the Fiesta Bowl
"The chance to work with Dick Bell once again was a major selling point in my decision, but even more important was the opportunity to help build East Coast Prep into the most outstanding prep football program in the country. There's a great future here, and I want to be part of it."
Zach Shagi - Offensive Coordinator
Quarterback & Receiver Coach
Zach has been with East Coast Prep since its first season and has grown tremendously as a coach and as a person. Under Zach's tutelage as offensive coordinator, East Coast Prep averaged over 30 points per game. We're sure he'll keep the offensive machine well oiled in 2015.
If there is a two word phrase that can sum up Zach's approach to the game of football, it's "results oriented." A 2009 graduate of Hofstra University, he's already racked up an impressive resume during his short coaching career. We're sure his energy and insights will make a big contribution to the East Coast Prep football program.
We are very pleased that Zach will be bringing his talents to ECP for another season in 2015.
Served as wide receiver coach at the United States Merchant Marine Academy in 2010.
While coaching at the Merchant Marine Academy, the Mariners led the Liberty League in passing efficiency.
Served as an intern with the coaching staff of the New York Dragons of the Arena Football League.
“Obviously, talent is a prerequisite for playing the skill positions. but without proper technique and solid fundamentals, talent is largely wasted
Jason Newsom - Director of Strength and Conditioning/Defensive Line
An undeniably valuable presence during his two seasons at East Coast Prep, Jason has given our athletes a solid physical foundation that will serve them well at the next level. If you're willing to work, he'll show you how to maximize your physical capabilities
As a former linebacker, Jason is well aware of the intensity needed in the weight room. His experience as a linebacker also gives him a sharp eye when diagnosing the strengths and weaknesses of the players under his guidance. And he knows that in the end it all comes down to how hard you're willing to work
When Jason was conditioning coach at Morehead State, 38 athletes under his supervision went on to gain all conference recognition. He knows how to get results. And, luckily for us, he'll be here for the 2014 season.
Jason is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS). Within the strength and conditioning community this is the highest level of achievement, the equivalent of a Ph.D. in academic circles.
Was a conditioning coach at both Stanford and Baylor and helped prepare them for appearances in the Fiesta and Holiday Bowls respectively. (Remarkably, Jason worked with both Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III during his time at these two schools.)
Believes in doing things the right way or not at all.
Takes a very scientific approach to strength and conditioning and stays abreast of all current developments in the field.
"In football, if your strength and conditioning program is not operating at the highest levels, you will not succeed."
We are currently accepting applications for our staff and coaching positions. If you are interested in applying, please click here to download a printable application.