By Matt Liebowitz
So much of what makes Coach Tommy Beaton tick, and what makes his players follow his lead, is evident in a quiet moment amidst chaos: Coach B standing in the gym during a school-wide event, his infant daughter asleep, her head in the crook of his elbow. Around him, students shuffle, scream, dance, but Coach B remains still. His daughter stays asleep.
As Williston Northampton’s new Head Football Coach, Tommy Beaton projects a steadfast, quiet confidence; he’s commanding, but not in the scream-in-your-face way many top-tier coaches are portrayed in movies. This reserved power is what makes Coach B so effective.
“You know your guys get it when you don’t have to say ‘hustle,’ they just hustle,” Beaton said.
Raised in West Newbury, Massachusetts, Beaton brings his own hustle to the field, a distinct pride for the game rooted in his own family tree—his grandfather served as head football and baseball coach, as well as athletic director, at Milton Academy for 25 years.
Beaton, however, does not rest on his laurels. After graduating from Bates College in 2010, Beaton pursued his master’s degree in teaching (with a focus in history) at Tufts University. From 2010 to 2015, he served as an assistant coach at Tufts. The decision to move to Williston, Beaton says, was two-fold, and rooted in the same pedigree that’s guided his life: family and football.
His brother, Patrick, was a post-graduate at Williston last year.
“I watched how much he grew up and matured here,” Beaton said, “and I realized this is a place that really has an influence on people’s lives.”
Of course his newborn played a role as well; Beaton, his wife, and their baby are fixtures around campus, where they enjoy the quality of life Williston provides.
And in such a setting, Beaton sees a unique opportunity to have a more meaningful impact on his players’ all-around lives than he could at Tufts.
“I always felt in college, kids came in pretty polished,” said Beaton. “They knew exactly who they were. At the high school level, [kids are] still trying to figure themselves out, and I can have an influence in the class, community, and field.”
That three-tiered approach is where Beaton’s strengths lie: “I’m always pushing them to be good people,” he said. “I always tell them to push yourself academically and handle yourself in class, because you never know who’s watching.”