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Hazing played role in Greensburg Central Catholic football coach stepping down

Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Greensburg Central Catholic coach Muzzy Colosimo celebrates his first WPIAL Championship after leading the Centurions past Aliquippa, 33-7, in the Class AA finals Nov. 27, 2009, at Heinz Field.

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Thursday, Aug. 23, 2012, 12:01 a.m.
 

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Greensburg confirmed Wednesday that longtime Greensburg Central Catholic football coach William “Muzzy” Colosimo was fired this month after an incident involving several Centurion players at a summer football camp in New Jersey.

The diocese would not give specifics about Colosimo's firing after 17 seasons or disclose disciplinary actions it may have taken against several players — the reported expulsion of two football players and the one-game suspension of five others over an alleged hazing incident.

“Greensburg Central Catholic Junior-Senior High School conducted a thorough and extensive investigation into allegations of misconduct during a trip taken by the football team to a football camp in New Jersey,” said a statement from Jerry Zufelt of the office for communications for the diocese.

“Greensburg Central Catholic expects the highest standards of conduct from its students and employees, both on and off campus, and it was disappointing to learn through the investigation that those standards and expectations were not met by all who attended the football camp,” the statement said.

“Greensburg Central Catholic cannot discuss confidential student and/or personnel matters. However, it is important for our school community to know that the Greensburg Central Catholic administration took the matter seriously, contacted the appropriate law enforcement authorities in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, immediately launched its own investigation, and administered appropriate discipline consistent with Greensburg Central Catholic's Code of Student of Conduct and standards for employees.”

Pennsylvania State Police spokesman Trooper Steve Limani said he was not aware of any local investigation and Rutgers University police and New Jersey State Police did not return calls.

The incident that led to the discipline reportedly took place during the Rutgers Football Camp for high school players that some members of the team attended in June.

Students and parents have repeatedly declined to talk publicly about the incident or Colosimo's dismissal.

When senior Corey Marshall was contacted, he said the school advised the team not to comment on the matter.

Colosimo was suspended as head coach by school officials while the matter was investigated, then “replaced” from his football job this month. The diocese said Colosimo will remain an employee at the school.

He was hired as a running backs coach this week by Seton Hill University in Greensburg.

Daniel Mahoney and Matthew Federico will serve as co-head coaches of Greensburg Central for the 2012 season. Mahoney, the athletic director, has been an assistant coach and defensive coordinator for the past 16 seasons.

Colosimo, who had only two losing seasons during his tenure as head coach, declined to discuss his termination. His teams won 143 games and lost 46.

Paul Peirce is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-850-2860 or ppeirce@tribweb.com.

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