The Fairfield Ludlowe High School boys’ basketball team has been improving a lot since the basketball program at FLHS was established for the 2004-2005 season. Although the school opened in 2003, basketball was not played the first year due to the thought that competition would not be healthy. The improvement is due in large part to Brian Silvestro, the head varsity boys’ basketball coach at FLHS. He is entering his third year as the varsity coach and his ninth year in the program overall. He previously served under former varsity coach, Josh Marko as the freshman coach his first year and then became JV coach, a position he held for five years until moving up to coach the varsity.
Although many people may think he only works during the season, Silvestro said that if his job is done right, “it’s a 12 month job.” Among other things, there is fundraising that has to be organized and overseen, including car washes, camps and clinics for younger kids. All these require work to be done before, during and after the event. He also sets up the off-season conditioning program for the potential players who are planning to try out. In the offseason and during the season he is there for any player who needs academic support. He also has to deal with all off-season leagues and anything else that comes up related to the basketball team.
Even though the job is such a time commitment, Silvestro loves the job and said his favorite part is “seeing growth, both physically and emotionally, in players through hard work in school and during practice and in competition”. Being a high school basketball coach is a difficult job and most coaches, including Silvestro, do more than just coach. When he is not on the basketball court, Coach Silvestro can be found at Brody Wilkinson Law Firm, where he is an attorney.
Despite his successful career, Silvestro became the coach because he felt as though he had something to contribute. However, he knows he could not do it alone. When describing his relationship with his assistant coaches, he said, “The job can’t be done alone, I consider us tri-coaches”. He also stated that if it were not for the team manager, the job would not be possible.
Dave Schulz, FLHS Athletic Director, knew that Silvestro was the right person for the job, “because he is knowledgeable about the sport but he is an excellent motivator and gets the most out of the talent which we have on any given season. He relates well with the players and has their respect”.
Former FLHS student, Kevin Bentivegna, who played at Ludlowe during Silvestro’s first year as varsity coach, said that playing for Silvestro, “was a great experience. He was such a good motivator and the thing that I appreciated the most was that he cared and wanted all of us to be successful beyond the basketball court. He made an effort to get involved with everyone on the team whether you were the best player or the last guy off the bench”.
Coach Silvestro is appreciated by everyone who knows him, for both his coaching ability and his outgoing personality. He will continue to develop the basketball team and hopefully lead them to a championship.