Just a month after longtime Xaverian H.S., Bay Ridge, varsity basketball coach Jack Alesi announced his retirement, the school has named a successor.
Tom Burns, a graduate of Xaverian’s Class of 1983, will take over this year as the boys’ varsity hoops coach.
Burns played college basketball at Quinnipiac University, Hamden, Conn., and is one of the founders of the Fastbreak Basketball Center in Staten Island.
He has been a part of the Xaverian community for nearly four decades, serving as a teacher, guidance counselor, dean of students, alumni coordinator and director of the school’s summer basketball camp. For the past 21 years, he has coached the Clippers’ freshmen and junior varsity hoops teams, as well as assisting Alesi on the varsity.
“Working with our students has always been its own reward,” said Burns, a member of school’s Athletic Hall of Fame. “I was lucky enough to have great coaches like Lou Piccola and Jack Alesi when I was a student at Xaverian… men who taught me a lot more than just basketball. I want our kids to have that same experience. To have the opportunity to continue that legacy is a tremendous honor for me.”
The Clippers will defend their 2016 CHSAA ‘AA’ city championship title, and the quest – now led by Burns – has already begun.