Football Nova Scotia’s Valardo named Auburn Drive Eagles head coach

Chris Valardo is returning to the high school football coaching ranks.

The Football Nova Scotia Vice President of High Performance has been selected as the new head coach of the Auburn Drive Eagles of the Nova Scotia Student Athletic Association Federation Football League (NSSAFFL).

“I am very excited about this new challenge at Auburn High School,” commented Valardo after accepting the position.  “I met with the Athletic Director Colin Bush and the administration last week.”

“There were several outstanding candidates that applied and I feel honoured to have been selected. Auburn has a rich tradition in athletic excellence both in boys and women’s sports such as football, basketball, rugby and hockey. The administration is very supportive of the football program that is entering its fourth year and I am looking forward on building on the success that Chris Anstey had last year.”

The Eagles position became vacant in February when previous head coach Chris Anstey accepted a defensive line coach position with the AUS’s Saint Mary’s Huskies.

Valardo brings a wealth of experience into this new position.  He began his coaching career as head coach of the Saint John Greyhounds of the New Brunswick High School Football League (NBHSFL) and would remain with the team for nine years as the head coach (1990-1998).  In 2004, Valardo was the head coach of the Fall River Dragons Minor Football Progam.  Up until 2012, he coached the peewee and bantam teams.  During his time there, the team was three time Tier 1 provincial finalists.  Moreover, he served in roles as both offensive coordinator (2010) and defensive coordinator (2011) of the Lockview Dragons of the NSSAFFL. In 2010, the Dragons were Tier 1 semi-finalists.

For the last few years, Valardo has been the head coach of numerous Nova Scotia provincial teams.  In 2009, he guided the under-17 provincial squad to undefeated record at the Wilson Cup Challenge in Quebec.  Under his instruction in 2010, Team Nova Scotia’s under-18 squad finished fourth place at the Football Canada Cup tournament, which was hosted in Wolfville.  Additionally, Valardo led Team Nova Scotia’s under-16’s squad to a bronze medal at the Red River Cup in Brandon, Manitoba.  The last two years, he was the head coach of the provincial under-17 teams that participated in the Wilson Cup Challenges in Quebec. Valardo is a Level 3 technical certified coach.

Even though Valardo has accepted this new position, he will remain as the Vice President of High Performance for Football Nova Scotia.

“First as far as my position at Football Nova Scotia goes, I have always coached in the fall with Fall River Minor Football and it has never been an issue with my role as the Vice President of High Performance and the provincial teams,” added Valardo.  “I fully plan on continuing on with Football Nova Scotia in my Vice President role.”

Through his vast coaching experience, Valardo is already familiar with many of the current Eagles players and looks forward to achieving specific goals and objectives with the team in the future.

“I have been very fortunate to have worked with several of the Auburn players already in the minor careers and the provincial program,” explained Valardo.  “The quality of athletes at Auburn High school is second to none now we have to build a program of excellence like other Nova Scotia programs such as Sir John A, Citadel, and CP Allen.”

“There are numerous examples of outstanding programs in the province and we want to build a culture that fosters competition, hard work and excellence. Our goals for the Auburn program are to represent the school, its fine administration and teachers, its students and parents in a manner that make everyone proud to be an Eagle.”

Ultimately, the quest to achieve these goals begins this upcoming August.

“We are going to start camp in August and work hard every day to get better and compete at the highest level possible,” said Valardo.  “Wins will come with hard work; championships are built in off seasons with a culture of dedication to your program.”

“We must build a culture first, then, hopefully we will compete with elite of Nova Scotia high school football.”




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