East Rutherford, NJ – The New York Giants and Gatorade have selected Mr. Rae Oliver of East Orange Campus High School (East Orange, NJ) as the Lou Rettino High School Coach of the Week for Week 8 of the 2020 season. Coach Rae Oliver is in his 4th season as Head Coach of the East Orange Jaguars and recently defeated previously unbeaten Clifton 36-0 in their final game at historic Paul Robeson Stadium. The Jaguars have a 5-2 record with four shutout performances.
The Lou Rettino High School Football Coach of the Week Award is part of the Giants' continuing effort to support local youth football programs. The Giants elected to name the award in memory of former Union High School (NJ) coach, Lou Rettino, for his fine commitment to the game of football, his community and the betterment of his athletes' lives. Each week during the high school football season, the Giants selected one area high school head coach as the Coach of the Week winner. The selection is based on the coach's continuing commitment towards promoting youth football, developing motivated student-athletes and his overall community involvement.
In recognition of Coach Oliver's selection as Coach of the Week, a $2,000 check will be granted to the school's football program from The Giants Foundation and Gatorade. He will also receive a certificate of recognition signed by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and Giants head coach Joe Judge.
Rae Oliver, an East Orange native, was named head coach of the East Orange Jaguars in 2017. Oliver began his coaching career as an assistant at East Orange Campus High School in 1995. In 2006, he moved on to St. Mary of Rutherford for a year where he served as an assistant tight end/defensive end coach and won the NJSIAA Non-Public Group 1 state title. Oliver then served one year at Queen of Peace in North Arlington and one year at Roselle High School. He made his first return to East Orange coaching staff in 2009, where they made it to the state sectional final, and then went on to Bergan Catholic from 2010-12 and Montclair High School from 2013-14, appearing in six straight finals from 2009-14. During that stretch, Oliver won an additional two state sectional titles.
As head coach of East Orange, Oliver has made academics and character a priority of his team. The Jaguars regularly attend camps at Rutgers University and Monmouth University where they can get a glimpse of the college experience and improve their football skills. Playing to his team's competitive spirit, he created a "college acceptance challenge" where his student-athletes try to gain as many college acceptance letters as they can. This challenge has not only changed the culture around academics for the Jaguars but has made college a reality for these players. Oliver believes that to make East Orange a model program, he needs the whole community's support and involvement. Not only does he work with the high school community, he also strives to provide a supportive environment within the city's youth football programs too.
Oliver arranged a special motivational conversation with Giants safety, and East Orange native, Jabrill Peppers in the week leading up to the game against Clifton. Peppers shared his motivation to fully commit himself to football, as well as to compete in academics as a student, encouraging the students to always find a way to work harder.