One of Joe Augusta’s main jobs on the Mashpee High School football team for the past few years has been making sure that the Falcons are pumped up. The assistant coach has been one of the main strength and conditioning coaches at MHS as well a middle school team coach, and he prides himself on helping the athletes there to be strong and ready for competition.
Over the past few months he’s made it a priority to help them stay pumped up, not just physically, but also mentally.
Throughout the pandemic, Augusta, who calls East Falmouth home, has been making videos that he’s posted online to assist the Falcons, and anyone else looking to stay in shape, with their strength and conditioning goals. While doing that he’s also been posting positive memes and messages for the student-athletes to enjoy and be inspired by.
“I wanted to be able to do for the kids, and be able to provide them with a program that they could follow along with at home while riding everything out,” Augusta said. “It was also good for me, and my personal training business. I had been meaning to put out more videos, and this was a chance for me to do that.”
MHS Head Coach Matt Triveri said that having someone like Augusta involved in the program, and working with young players, makes the program stronger.
“He’s been a Godsend in our strength and conditioning program,” Triveri said. “Joe brings a lot of enthusiam and connects well with kids and wants them to be great.”
Augusta said he did not know much about producing quality content for the internet. With the help of his fiancee Caitlin Corrieri, he was able to begin taping exercise routines and workouts and come up with videos that were worth sharing with the Mashpee athletics community.
With feedback from the masses, Augusta said that he began to make better videos for sharing. With each one he found himself becoming more comfortable with the format, and producing output that he was proud of.
It wasn’t just videos that he was sharing. During the pandemic a product shortage that gained far less coverage than the availability of paper products was the availability of weights to purchase. Stores simply ran out of most of their workout equipment.
Wanting his athletes to be able to keep up with their plans, Augusta loaned out hundreds of pounds of his own weights. When it became apparent that he wouldn’t have enough to go around, he went old school and bought sand bags that athletes could fill and use instead.
“I wanted the kids to know that I would still be there for them, and if they needed a hand, I wanted to be able to help,” Augusta explained. “I’ve always had that lineman’s mentality, you’ve got to block for other people.”
With school starting shortly, Augusta is very excited for the new year. He recently began a job at Mashpee as a special education teacher, and is still very much involved with training athletes and coaching football. The athletes were able to come back to the MHS gym a few weeks ago, and the reunion certainly made the coach happy, and proud.
“I think that they’ve all got that intrinsic motivation. Mashpee kids are just tough, and they get after it. They all came back in great shape. Mashpee kids are a different breed of tough.”
With a senior class that would have led a team that should have been one of the favorites to challenge for a Super Bowl championship had 2020 been a normal football season, Augusta said that when Mashpee is able to play football during the “Fall II” season, come March, that he believes that the Falcons will play with a chip on their shoulder. The gridiron will see some good stuff from the Falcons, the assistant coach thinks, once the team is allowed to play. In the meantime the squad will soon begin working on skills under the COVID-19 guidelines set forth by the MIAA.
“I know that they are really looking forward to the chance to compete,” he said. “I think all of that hard work is going to pay off.”
The team will be cashing in that hard work and will owe some of the credit for their success to their hard-working training coach. He won’t take the credit, though. Augusta said that what he does is a labor of love, taking as much joy from seeing athletes work their way to new personal bests in their training regiments as he does in wins on the field.
Triveri said it goes deeper than just helping kids to get stronger.
“These are the type of people that we want around our kids,” Triveri said. “He’s a great resource for our kids.”
Augusta loves what he does, and will continue to do it with a smile on his face.
“I know that technically I work for the Town of Mashpee, but I treat it like I work for the kids,” he said.