Frank Colaprete enters his seventh season leading The College of Wooster football team, and continues to rebuild the program having installed new systems on both sides of the ball (an up-tempo Spread offense and a 4-2-5 defensive alignment), moving several players to new positions, which reflects his straightforward coaching philosophy that the “best 11 players get on the field,” and employing new recruiting strategies, all while accumulating 28 wins (28-32).
Colaprete’s team started to reap the rewards of his philosophy in 2017 as the Scots finished 6-4, had the North Coast Athletic Conference’s Player and Newcomer of the Year, and broke or matched 32 school records. Individually, Patrick Mohorcic ’18 was selected to and later voted the captain of the Allstate American Football Coaches Association Good Works Team® - one of the highest off-the-field honors in collegiate football – and he was one of four finalists for the prestigious Coach John Wooden Citizenship Cup.
Thanks to new aggressive recruiting strategies, Colaprete now has plenty of depth at every position to couple with a talented cast of upperclassmen, as for the fourth straight year, Wooster will welcome over 30 first-years to the team once camp opens this August.
Five years ago, Colaprete handed off the defensive coordinator duties to a trusted assistant, allowing him to take a greater part in all aspects of game preparation, practice, and in-game coaching, after serving as the coordinator for the first two years of his head coaching tenure.
Colaprete’s first year with the Fighting Scots was most impressive, as he orchestrated a turnaround during 2013 that saw an undermanned squad go 7-3 and take third-place in the NCAC – a five-win improvement and five-spot jump in the standings over the previous season. It was capped by the biggest comeback in school history – a 28-27 win against Ohio Wesleyan University after trailing 27-7 early in the fourth quarter – and Colaprete was the third-leading vote getter among NCAA Div. III coaches in the Facebook fan voting portion of the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year award.
Since Colaprete took over, Wooster has set 20 single-season offensive school records, including total yards per game (443.6), and the 2013 defensive unit he coached nearly set one, producing 28 takeaways (17 interceptions, 11 fumble recoveries), which has been a staple of his defenses. On the other side of the ball, Wooster only turned it over 11 times (9 interceptions, 2 fumbles lost) in 2016, the fewest giveaways in program history.
Colaprete was hired at Wooster in January 2013, following a highly successful run at Johns Hopkins University, where he was the associate head coach for three seasons and defensive coordinator for five.
Colaprete spent two significant stints at Johns Hopkins, the second being the 2010-12 seasons when the Blue Jays won the Centennial Conference championship each year, reached the NCAA Div. III Football Championship field twice, and combined for a 28-6 record. His defenses were among the best in Div. III, as the 2012 unit ranked among the top-40 in total defense (306.6 ypg), scoring defense (17.8 ppg), and sacks (3.25 per game), and in 2011, they were top-25 in every major defensive category, including 10th in total yards allowed (243.3 ypg) and 12th in scoring (13.1 ppg). Also in the 2011 season, Johns Hopkins led the nation with seven academic all-district players.
Notable, Johns Hopkins finished in the D3football.com top-25 poll twice, No. 18 in 2011 and No. 22 in 2012, and Colaprete directly mentored two Academic All-Americans® as defensive coordinator.
Johns Hopkins won its first-ever CC title during Colaprete’s second year there (2002) when he was the defensive backs coach, and the Blue Jays collected three more championships over the next three seasons, including 2005 when he was first promoted to defensive coordinator while also shifting to linebackers coach. During Colaprete’s first stint at Johns Hopkins (2001-06), the team went 47-16, the winningest six-year period in school history.
In between, Colaprete remained in the Baltimore/Washington D.C. metropolitan area, as he was defensive line coach at NCAA Football Championship Subdivision member Georgetown University for three seasons (2007-09).
Prior to his 12-year stretch at Johns Hopkins and Georgetown, Colaprete started his coaching career at one of Wooster’s North Coast Athletic Conference peers, Allegheny College. He was there for two years (1999-2000).
In addition to being very familiar with the NCAC, Colaprete has strong ties to northeast Ohio. He is a native of Youngstown (Cardinal Mooney High School) and went to John Carroll University, earning a bachelor’s degree while majoring in psychology, then added a master’s degree in sports administration from Kent State University.
Colaprete and his wife, Jessica, have happily settled in Wooster with their son, Dominic (7), daughter, Adriana (4), and daughter Gia (1).