The beleaguered football program is looking to a proven champion to help turn around its fortunes.
Joseph Tata, Jr., a longtime assistant coach in Connecticut and a defensive specialist, has been named the Falcons' new head coach, Coordinator of Athletics Barry Bernstein announced Monday.
Tata came to prominence in the early 2000s, when he served as assistant defensive coordinator at New Britain High School during a streak of three consecutive Class LL state championships. He coached Tebucky Jones, who went on to a nine-year career in the National Football League, including a Super Bowl XXXVI championship with the New England Patriots.
Following his tenure at New Britain, Tata moved to Western New England College as defensive coordinator and linebackers coach. Under his tutelage, two of his linebackers were selected to the All-Conference team.
Most recently, Tata spent four years as assistant defensive coordinator at Wethersfield High School. He is a lieutenant with the State of Connecticut Department of Correction.
At Fermi, he is replacing , who resigned after two tough seasons at the helm.
Tata inherits a program that was winless in 2011, and was outscored 394-65. The Falcons' last victory was Nov. 5, 2010 against Weaver.
In an interview with Enfield Patch Monday, Tata said he plans to move away from the spread offense employed by the Falcons in recent years.
"I'm going to go back to the basics," he said. "I have some plans I'd like to implement, possibly a Power-I or Veer triple option. The blocking schemes for both are very simple. I like to run the ball, so our quarterback will be under center."
Tata said he met with a group of about 25 players last Thursday. He has already prepared and distributed a complete daily schedule, running from mid-April to early December.
"I'm going to have to review a lot of game film," he said. "This is a very big opportunity for me. I plan to establish a great relationship with the parents and get involved with the Booster Club. A winning program is not just on the field; it's in the community, and in academic success."