Philadelphia High School Football

A Look at Tom DeFelice's 18-Year Coaching
Career (1993-2010) at Edward Bok Tech

  This page includes stories, special lists, record breakdown, recaps of wins in championship
games and the names of All-Public/All-City honorees during Coach DeFelice's 18 seasons.
 . . .
To provide additions/ Thanks!  

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In 2004, in preparation for the Public League's first appearance in a PIAA playoff, Bok held a night practice
at a South Philly playground and then chowed down across the street at Geno's. Yong Kim is taking pics
 for the Daily News. At the table are Amir Nuriddin (27), Joe "Pepe" DeSalis (2) and Joe Campagna.
In line  are Gregory Thomas (52), Mike DelValle (51), Cossim Turner (48), Cortez McLaughlin (15) and
Rasheed Fleming (57). To the left is Maurice Brockington (31).
DeSalis' dad, John, worked the grill at Geno's.

Tom DeFelice

Coach DeFelice's
Daily News All-City Honorees:
*-Played in NFL

Charles Kennedy 1999
Ramon Mills Rec. 1999
Ramon Mills Rec. 2000
William Warfield DL 1997
Eddie Turner LB 1998
Ralph Sheridan DL 1999
Ed Brumskill DB 2000
Cedric Green LB 2002
Keith Williams DB 2005
Nick Perrone DL 2005
Ryan Murray L 2006
Maurice "Rookie" Goodwin DB 2006
Ryan Murray DL 2007
Luke Lassiter RB 2007
Ackeem Clarke DL 2007
Ray Tucker RB 2008
Naeem Nunnally LB 2009
Kevin Thompson DL 2009
Khalil Neal LB 2010
*Jihad Ward DL 2010
Tawan Miller RB 1993
Mark Lowman DB 1994
Michael Gales RB 1994
Michael Gales RB 1995
Charles Kennedy DL 1998
Ed Brumskill MP 1999
Rodney McCarter RB 2000
Shawn Jeter LB 2001
Akeem "Feathers" Green RB 2002
Aaron Hayes L 2003
Shon Thompkins L 2005
Brahkim Poole DB 2008
Troy Martin DB  2008
Shaquil Sammons RB 2010




Tom DeFelice
Tribute Page

  Tom DeFelice coached Edward Bok Tech's football team for 18 seasons (1993-2010), winning 129 games and three Public League classification championships. His teams won a record 43 consecutive PL regular season games. This story was written after the streak ended . . .

By Ted Silary

  Streak? What streak?
  That was the mind-set maintained by coach Tom DeFelice through 9 years as Edward Bok Tech's football team kept plowing through Public League regular-season games that were played in various divisions through assorted alignments.
  "I never talked to the players about it. Never," he said. "I never wanted to put pressure on
  Forty-three up, in glorious fashion . . . One down, rather convincingly.
  Bok and its streak - the best in Pub history - parted company Saturday morning in a AA Division game at the South Philly Super Site. Imhotep Charter did the deed, 28-6, as Maurice Palmer turned 27 carries into 131 yards and four touchdowns.
  With only three starters on each side of the ball, and with his prominent 2-year starting quarterback Andre Frazier unavailable all season (not to mention the original backup, as well) due to injury, DeFelice knew the streak would be tough to sustain.
  "In a scrimmage," he said, "Gratz did a pretty good number on us. We're a learning team."
  As a former star quarterback at West Catholic and Temple, DeFelice knows the impact a polished passer can have on a game. He knew Imhotep's Christopher Lewis could be dangerous. He could only hope that the Panthers' rushing game would be average, at best.
  Didn't work out that way. Palmer was terrific.
"They had that great combination going for them," DeFelice said. "The threat of the excellent passer and the rusher who . . . man, that kid had some great runs.
  "Like Charlie Guida [deceased former Bok coach] liked to say, 'We had our turn in the barrel.' That's how it goes. At some point your turn's over."
  Bok's touchdown came on Khalil Neal's 45-yard, third-quarter run; Imhotep already owned a 22-0 lead. Nine of Bok's 31 plays went for losses and the yardage total was an uncommonly low 132.
  In a deserted part of Bok's locker room, sitting on a bench with one leg propped up, DeFelice in time acknowledged feeling special about the lengthy run.
  "I'm proud of what Bok has accomplished," he said. "I have a great staff and those guys deserve the credit. Also, I have tremendous kids who want to work hard, and who know the value of self-discipline."

Public League
1993: 5-0
1994: 3-2  
1995: 3-2 
1996: 3-2
1997: 1-4
1998: 4-1
1999: 5-0
2000: 4-1 
2001: 3-2
2002: 5-0
2003: 5-0
2004: 6-0
2005: 4-0
2006: 5-0
2007: 8-0
2008: 5-0
2009: 4-0
2010: 4-2
Total: 77-16
1993: 7-2
1994: 6-3  
1995: 4-5 
1996: 4-6
1997: 4-6
1998: 6-3-1
1999: 9-1
2000: 7-3 
2001: 4-5
2002: 7-2
2003: 7-2
2004: 7-3
2005: 9-1
2006: 9-2
2007: 11-1
2008: 10-1
2009: 10-1
2010: 8-3
Total: 129-50-1

2008 AA
2009 AA
2010 AA

700 RUSHERS    
Luke Lassiter 1,321 '07
Shaquil Sammons 1,172 '10
Luke Lassiter 1,088 '06
Akeem Green 1,009 '02
Ray Tucker 993 '08
Cory Moultrie 890 '04
Michael Gales 764 '94
Khalil Neal 757 '09
Rodney McCarter 752 '00
Bruce Morton 738 '96
Tawan Miller 718 '93
600 PASSERS    
Andre Frazier 726 '09
Kareem Jeffreys 645 '00
Kareem Jeffreys 640 '99
William Gadson 617 '98
Marquise Brown 615 '10
William Gadson 614 '97
Ramon Mills 558 '99
Ramon Mills 506 '00
Ramon Mills 336 97
Troy Martin 313 '08

This story was written in 2007 after Tom guided Bok to a two-OT win for the Public
League AAA Division championship . . .

By Ted Silary
  LUKE LASSITER'S heart was nearly in his throat. And if the beat had been any stronger, it would have registered on the
Richter scale.
  Again and again one thought kept bouncing around in his mind . . .
  "I didn't win this 3 years to lose it in my senior year. "
  By "this," he meant the Division AAA title in Public League football and what happened yesterday before 500 spirited
spectators at 29th and Chalmers was what happened in 2004, '05 and '06. Well, it was and it wasn't.
  Yes, Edward Bok Tech is again the champion and again will participate in roughly a month in the PIAA state playoffs as
the District 12 representative. But this win against its major nemesis throughout the span, Ben Franklin, required the
expenditure of much more effort and the overall circumstances were incredibly memorable.
  Not only were the Wildcats forced to rally from a 14-0 deficit merely to assure the game would go into overtime. They then
triumphed, 30-28, in two extra sessions!
  "I've never been through something like that. Never," Lassiter said. "When it was over, I was just so happy. Tears were
coming out of my eyes."
  He wasn't alone.
  As a desperation, off-balance pop-up conversion pass by Franklin's Tajidin McGough fell incomplete in a tangle of bodies
at roughly the line of scrimmage, the Wildcats exploded in joy. Assorted Electrons could be spotted with hands on their helmets,
their facemasks buried into the ground.
  "I don't feel too much sympathy for them. That's how it goes," Lassiter said. "But as I told my teammates, we have to
give them big respect. They gave us everything. Just the fact that it went to double OT tells you that. "
  The 5-8, 160-pound Lassiter finished with 25 carries for 162 yards despite suffering a ding to his left knee in the first
  "It was hurting, but not that bad," he said. "I just had to keep telling myself to keep playing through it."
  He scored a touchdown, on an 8-yard run, with 1:25 left that rallied Bok into a 14-14 tie. On that conversion, he was
stopped by Chris Sturgis and Jamel "Redz" Haggins.
  In the first OT, Franklin scored immediately on a 10-yard run by Sturgis (21-86) and the same guy added the two-pointer
in surprisingly simple fashion. Darnell Goddard answered with a 1-yard sneak on third down and Lassiter made it 22-22.
  Second OT: Lassiter collected eight more points on a 3-yard burst - stretching the ball over the goal line - and another
easy-as-pie untouched dash to the left corner.
  Franklin managed six-eighths of an answer in the form of a 1-yard, third-down sneak.
  Just before the conversion, with the noise reaching incredible levels and many Franklin fans pressed against police barricades
at the back edge of the sideline, Bok coach Tom DeFelice and defensive coordinator Vince Trombetta, Franklin's head coach
in an earlier lifetime, waved onto the field Temple recruit Ryan Murray, a 6-6, 330-pounder who to this point of the game
had played only offense.
  McGough was unable to cleanly handle the snap. As McGough recovered, Murray was powering his way through the
middle. From the ground, he grabbed McGough around his legs and forced the aforementioned pass that really had no chance.
  Lassiter was watching from the sideline.
  "Ryan did just what the coaches hoped he would," he said. "He's just so big. It's so hard to stop him."
  Afterward, the words came gushing out of DeFelice.
  "What a great day for the Public League!" he said. "Our kids were great and Franklin's were right there with them. True
sportsmen. True warriors.
  "How about Luke? Wasn't he tremendous? I told our kids at halftime to remain calm, that I thought we could move the ball.
Then Luke was great. He showed his character."
  Murray and guard Jamar Chase formed the left side of Bok's line and, like almost always, most of the plays went in that
direction. The tying TD in regulation was a notable exception. Guard Anthony Rivers and tackle Leland Sledge made that
ne possible, with help (as earlier) from center Jeff Smith. Along with the element of surprise.
  Franklin was sittin' pretty early, causing non-stop jubilation for a guy holding a sign that read, "The Bok Stops Here! Go
  Tyron Carlton caught a punt and zoomed 87 yards for a TD just 3:45 into the game and 5:14 before halftime Sturgis raced
33 yards for a score. Much of the yardage-gobbling on that 12-play, 95-yard drive was done by Duane "Bam" Burrell (9-63).
  But in the third quarter, Burrell and star lineman Lydell Boanes departed for Temple Hospital in the back of the same
ambulance with what were feared to be broken left ankles.
  Bok's first score came with 4:06 left in that session on Goddard's 1-yard burrow. The drive had to cover just 35 yards after
Kendall Johnson partially smothered a punt. Lassiter immediately took care of the first 34 yards.
  Though his play, of course, spoke volumes, this was not the first time yesterday that Lassiter represented Bok in fine fashion.
His day began at 8:30 in his former elementary school - Fell, at 9th and Oregon. Lassiter, DeFelice and two other Fell grads,
defensive mainstays Terry Lee and Khaleem Williams, made an assembly appearance to talk up Bok to seventh- and
  "Coach did all the talking. I kept thinking about the game," Lassiter said, laughing. "It was nice to be part of that, though.
I went to Fell from third to eighth grade. Good memories. I was talking to some of the kids afterward. I told them, 'I used to
sit in the same seats you guys are in.' "
  Yesterday, Lassiter saw his seat as being hot.
  "I kept thinking how the game would be on my shoulders," he said. "If something goes wrong, you're thinking you're going
to be the one to blame.
  "Everybody was telling me to just stay calm. At school. In our locker room. On the bus ride. On the field before we got
started . . . "
  Afterward, he heard no such instruction.
  All guys wearing blue and white were too busy expressing unabashed joy.

This story was written in 2004 as Tom and Bok prepared to become the first Public
League team to participate in a PIAA playoff . . .

By Ted Silary
  It wasn't the first time Joe "Pepe" DeSalis wolfed down a cheesesteak at Geno's.
  It was, however, the first time he did so with 50 friends and acquaintances, 40 of whom were decked out in game-day
football uniforms.
  DeSalis is the 5-10, 170-pound senior quarterback for Edward Bok Tech, which Friday night will become the first Public
League/District 12 football team to compete in a PIAA state playoff.
  The opponent and site: Great Valley High, in Malvern. The occasion: a Class AAA District 1-12 subregional semifinal.
The way to prepare: with a practice under the lights.
  "They wanted us to go to Northeast High," coach Tom DeFelice said, referring to PL bigwigs. "I told them I didn't want to
go there. Bok is a South Philly school and there are plenty of good facilities down here.
  "I happened to drive past here one day last week and a bulb went off. I'm always thinking. My wife, Grace, says I think
too much. Anyway, Bok's a South Philly tradition. The cheesesteak places are a South Philly tradition. I figured this would
be a great idea. No offense to Pat's, but we chose Geno's."
  Pause. "It just so happens that our quarterback's father works there."
  It was a wonderful 3 hours. At 4:30, the Wildcats boarded a bus at their clubhouse, at 11th and Bigler, for the short trek
to Capitolo Playground, directly across from the bright lights and thousands of photos at Geno's.
  They practiced for close to 90 minutes in their impressive blue-and-white uniforms with the names on the back, then
staged a hungry-man occupation of the tables lining the sidewalk along 9th Street. Cheese and ketchup were oozing like
crazy. The last part of the evening was the bus ride back to deep South Philly.
  DeFelice, as always, was Mr. Energy during the workout. Trotting from spot to spot and yelling instructions and
encouragement, always in duplicate.
  "Atta baby! Atta baby! . . . Get rid of it it faster! Get rid of it faster! . . . No mistakes! No mistakes! . . . Way to be! Way
to be! . . . Good hustle! Good hustle!"
  At one point, a man walking past the playground looked at the Wildcats and commented, "That's a beautiful sight." When
told the practice would be followed with Geno's cheesesteaks, the man quipped, "Breakfast of champions."
  A state championship is way too much to expect. And even Great Valley will likely be a tough-to-conquer foe. But the
Wildcats, who opted out of the PL playoffs to follow this path, are nothing if not excited and hopeful.
  "This means a lot to the school. No one ever did this before," DeSalis said. "At first, we didn't even know something like
this was possible. But when the coaches mentioned it to the captains and other seniors, and said we could compete in the
Triple A category for a state championship, we all said, 'Yeah, let's go for it!'
  "A lot of people are confident around the school we can win. Just like we are."
  DeSalis lives near 10th and Porter.
  "I played all my peewee football games in this playground," he said. "So, I thought it was a great idea to have our practice
here. And to know we'd be walking across the street to eat together. This is all so new to us. A practice at night. Then a
game at night. It's cool to be part of it." 
  Bok's offensive starters aside from DeSalis are center Chris Cotton, guards Rasheed Fleming and Gregory Thomas,
tackles Joe Campagna and Bryant Whitney, tight end Sean Jessup, split end Nafis Edwards, flanker Maurice Goodwin,
halfback Cory Moultrie and fullback Cossim Turner.
  The defensive lineup: Ends Turner and Jessup, tackles Dahson Exum and Shon Thompkins, nose guard Campagna,
linebackers Thomas and Cortez McLaughlin, rotating cornerbacks Maurice Brockington, Amir Nuriddin and Maurice
Goodwin, and safeties Moultrie and Edwards.
  The original noseguard, the highly productive Nick Perrone, is out with a broken leg. He's having surgery today, but was in
attendance last night to offer support and add emotion.
  The assistants on hand were Frank "Roscoe" Natale, Lloyd Jenkins and Vince Trombetta. Along with the current
principal, Al Sorchetti, and the man who will soon succeed him, Larry Melton.
  DeFelice, a star quarterback at West Catholic and Temple, is in his 36th year at Bok. He loves the school and it loves
him back.
  "I'm happy for the teachers and coaches at Bok, especially the ones that were around when I came to the school," he
said. "The school took a lot of abuse. The teams in every sport were Public League doormats. I was so charged up to help
try and change it.
  "My dad always told me, 'Change is a process, not an event. ' Since the early '80s, there's been a lot of positive change
at Bok. "
   DeFelice then mentioned he'd received a phone call from a former teacher-coach named Sara Tucker, who's long retired.
  "She's so charged up for us," he said. "The things she said brought tears to my eyes. Fact, they're bringing tears now . . .
  "Anyway, here we are, little, ol' Bok, the smallest Pub school with a football team all these years, and we're going to be
the first to represent the city in a PIAA playoff. I feel great for our kids, our coaches, our teachers, our administrators and
our fans. We're going into this game 100 percent confident that we'll do a good job."
  Raise a cheesesteak to that.

Below are the players who earned Coaches' All-Public honors during Tom DeFelice's 18
as the coach at Edward Bok Tech.

Tawan Miller RB 1993 Nafis Edwards Rec. 2004
Ronald Kindle DL 1993 Cory Moultrie RB 2004
Daminon Owens LB 1993 Gregory Thomas L 2004
Albert Thomas QB 1993 Nick Perrone DL 2004
Tariq Ceasar L-DL 1993 Cortez McLaughlin LB 2004
Michael Gales RB 1993 Sean Jessup DL 2004
Mark Lowman DB 1994 Keith Williams RB 2005
Michael Gales RB 1994 Nick Perrone L 2005
Tariq Ceasar DL 1994 Shon Thompkins L 2005
Ronald Kindle LB 1994 Bryant Whitney L 2005
Donald Medley L 1994 Anthony Gales L 2005
Pondossa Butler DB 1994 Dahson Exum L 2005
Michael Gales RB-LB 1995 James Jones QB 2005
Terrence Woodstock Rec.-DE 1995 Dante Quarterman MP 2005
Jared Anderson L-LB 1995 Stephen Brantley L 2005
Rodrigus Williams L-DL 1995 Ryan Murray L 2006
Omar Sabir L-DL 1996 Maurice "Rookie" Goodwin WR 2006
Horace Stewart L-DL 1996 Anthony Brickle L 2006
Bruce Morton RB-LB 1996 Leland Sledge L 2006
Will Gadson QB 1996 Mike Nelson QB 2006
William Warfield L-DL 1997 Luke Lassiter RB 2006
Bruce Morton RB-LB 1997 Akeem Clarke L 2006
Eddie Turner RB-LB 1998 Jeremy Morris LB 2006
Charles Kennedy L-DL 1998 Daquon Johnson LB 2006
Will Gadson QB 1998 Ryan Murray L 2007
Nevelle Bonaparte Rec.-DE 1998 Luke Lassiter RB 2007
Tyron Ellerbe L-LB 1998 Ackeem Clarke L 2007
Charles Kennedy L-DL 1999 Leland Sledge L 2007
Ramon Mills Rec.-LB 1999 Anthony Rivers L 2007
Ralph Sheridan L-DL 1999 Terry Lee L 2007
Ed Brumskill Rec.-DB 1999 Daquon Johnson LB 2007
Rodney McCarter Rec.-DB 1999 Ray Tucker RB 2008
Rodney Ray RB-LB 1999 Brahkim Poole WR/DB 2008
Kyle Lark Rec.-DB 1999 Troy Martin WR/DB 2008
Ramon Mills Rec.  2000 Kevin Bryan FB/NG 2008
Ed Brumskill DB 2000 Ramar Bridges L 2008
Rodney McCarter RB 2000 Monteze Guions L 2008
Wayne Stith L 2000 Jasaan Thomas L/DT 2008
Nick DiPietro LB 2000 Naeem Nunnally LB 2009
Shawn Jeter LB 2000 Kevin Thompson NG  2009
Shawn Jeter L-LB 2001 Andre Frazier QB 2009
Akeem "Feathers" Green Rec.-DB 2001 Khalil Neal FB 2009
Will McCall RB-DB 2001 Josh Garnett L 2009
Tyrique Johnson L-DL 2001 Khasiem Sledge L 2009
Cedric Green RB 2002 Robert Quarterman DB 2009
Akeem "Feathers" Green RB 2002 Jacqual Dobbs E 2009
Marcelluas Barnes DL 2002 Khalil Neal LB 2010
Ethan Simmons LB 2002 Jihad Ward E 2010
Alex Montero DL 2002 Shaquil Sammons RB 2010
Vinny Trama LB 2002 Maurice T-Toe NG 2010
Aaron Hayes L 2003 Marqui Alfriend T 2010
Cedric Green LB 2003      
Kenny Major RB 2003      
Tommy Williams L 2003      
Allen Major QB 2003      
Navarre Archie DL 2003      

Recaps of Wins in Public League Championship Games

Class 2A
At Southern
Bok 32, Franklin 12
Andre Frazier accounted for the game's first three TDs, sandwiching two shorties
around a 26-yard pass to Troy Martin. Ray Tucker added 138 yards and two scores
on 15 carries and Brahkim Poole made two picks, raising his career total to 16. Chris
Sherrod, Kevin Bryan and Gary Jackson recovered fumbles to set up TDs; Jasaan
Thomas did likewise by blocking a punt. For Franklin, which played without star
rusher Marquis White (broken foot), Shuron Briggs carried 22 times for 109 yards
and one TD.
Class 2A
At Southern
Bok 32, Imhotep 8
  Andre Frazier passed 5-for-8 for 100 yards and one TD apiece to Jihad Ward and
Gary Jackson, and added a score of his own. Faison Perry also posted a rushing TD
while Robert Quarterman had an interception. Imhotep's Christopher Lewis passed
7-for-16 for 71 yards and the TD went to Dasir White on a 1-yard run. The Panthers' 18 rushes netted minus-11 yards.
Class 2A
At Gratz
Bok 41, Imhotep 0

Shaquil Sammons ran 16 times for 154 yards and four TDs and was one of four
Wildcats (also Jihad Ward, Michael Riley, John Richardson) to post interceptions. Riley, a freshman, returned his pick 15 yards for a score. For Imhotep, Jeraal Boone made five catches for 48 yards. This result was part of a 63-point turnaround. Imhotep had beaten Bok, 28-6, in September, ending the Wildcats' 43-game, nine-year Pub regular season winning streak.