Saugus football coach says he was cleared of wrongdoing

Anthony Nalen said on Tuesday he was reinstated as Saugus football coach and cleared following a police investigation into whether he ordered a player to practice in his underwear.

Nalen released a statement through his attorney, saying the Saugus police “cleared my good name.”

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Reached Tuesday night, Ronald Giorgetti, the interim police chief for Saugus, confirmed the police investigation into the matter was concluded, and he anticipated reviewing the report on Wednesday morning. He declined to comment further.

“I adamantly and completely deny any and all accusations made against me relating to this matter. My players are my first and only priority and I would never do anything to hurt or embarrass anyone of them,” Nalen said in the statement. “I’m sure that you all have questions so I am giving you a factual explanation of what happened and didn’t happen in the interest of complete transparency.”

According to Nalen’s statement, players were allowed to wear black, red or white shorts only at football camp in August.


“Apparently an allegation was made that one player had worn boxer shorts back on the field after being asked to change into the appropriate colored shorts during a practice that took place on August 17, approximately 11 days before the allegation was made known to me,’’ Nalen wrote.

“On August 28, I was informed by the superintendent of the allegation and was told to keep quiet about it. It would have been my preference to address the players and parents to keep them informed but I was not allowed to do so. On August 30. I was suspended by the superintendent.”

Mike Mabee, who coaches football for Belmonte Middle School in Saugus, was the interim head coach for the Sachems last Friday in their season-opening 30-12 loss to Amesbury.


“I would like everyone to go back to focusing on the kids like we should have been doing for the last four weeks,” Nalen said in his statement. “I promise that my staff will continue striving to make this a successful and enjoyable football season.”

Danny McDonald of the Globe staff contributed to this report. Brandon Chase can be reached at brandon.chase@globe.com