In The Sound of Music, the nuns in the abbey sang “How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria?”
In North Brunswick, head coach Mike Cipot had to figure out how to solve the problem of not having the graduated Myles Bailey.
All he did in his time with the Raiders was re-write more than a couple of key pages in the record books. Bailey is tops in career rushing yards (5,096), career rushing touchdowns (41), and career points (314). And as a safety, his 8 career interceptions rank 5th all-time in school history.
Bailey now is a grayshirt at Central Michigan, and he’s not the only top talent Cipot lost.
There’s Samod Wingo, a TE/DE who is at William Paterson, and Leon Lowery – who played in a handful of games late in the season for Syracuse.
But Cipot and his assistants found a way, leading North Brunswick to a 7-1 season, their only loss to Cranford, one of the Big Central’s top teams.
How did they account for the loss of Bailey’s big numbers? By committee.
Five different players – including the quarterback, sophomore Frankie Garbolino – rushed for 100 yards or more this season.
Click below to hear Mike Cipot talk about how the Raiders continued their success in 2020:
Honorable mentions for Coach of the Year included Dan Lee of Monroe and Scotch Plains-Fanwood’s Austin Holman.
Lee’s Falcons finished 5-1, by far the school’s best season since he took over for Chris Beagan in 2016. Monroe had gone a combined 8-30 in Lee’s first four seasons. Their only loss came by 7 at home to Old Bridge in Week One, and they won their remaining games by a combined 184-60, never allowing more than 18 points the rest of the way.
Holman led the Raiders to a 5-2 season, following a 4-6 mark in his first year at SPF in 2019. He took over a program that had gone a combined 9-50 under Mark Ciccotelli and Jon Stack from 2013-18. They scored three blowout wins, beating Princeton, JFK and Colonia by a combined 136-29.