The Student News Site of Monta Vista High School

El Estoque

The Student News Site of Monta Vista High School

El Estoque

The Student News Site of Monta Vista High School

El Estoque

Directing with open arms

Bonacorsi plays a large role in many aspects of MVHS athletics
Kaia Yuan
Athletic Director Nick Bonacorsi’s classroom is decorated with trophies, photos, and jerseys.

As the Athletic Director of MVHS, Nick Bonacorsi is constantly engaged in its athletic environment. Whether he’s cheering on the varsity teams in CCS or advising the athlete-led Athletic Senate, his passion for sports is evident. Athletic Senate members and coaches recognize Bonacorsi’s easygoing but proactive personality, translating his love for sports into tangible impacts for the MVHS community.

Senior and Athletic Senate member Elijah Kang believes that Bonacorsi relates well with the students and enjoys Bonacorsi’s support of team members, his organizational skills and ideas when it comes to promoting participation in athletics.

“My first impression of Mr. Bonacorsi was that he’s a really great guy, and he’s really chill,” Kang said. “He’s definitely been there for me and supported me. I know that he has my back. And if I need anything, I could go talk to him about it.”

Bonacorsi’s ultimate goal is to spread awareness of athletics. He feels that many do not know of the successes of MVHS’s sports teams due to a lack of community awareness, as the school is thought of by many to be an academic powerhouse and weaker athletically compared to other FUHSD schools such as Homestead and Fremont. Bonacorsi says that one of his main goals is to give athletes the recognition they deserve, rather than solely focusing on the academic aspects of the school, such as being a member of the nationally accredited Blue Ribbon schools.

“We do a really good job celebrating academic success like Blue Ribbon status, and it didn’t feel like we were doing a good job at the time celebrating our athletics programs in the past,” Bonacorsi said. “Sports are a huge part of my life, and some of my best memories are of high school, so I thought the lack of representation was a problem that we should change someday.”

As a result, Bonacorsi hopes to expand sports to new audiences and players. According to Bonacorsi, the COVID-19 lockdowns caused a dip in participation that has been recovering as activities came back in person. He hopes to bolster this through various initiatives in the athletics department.

“Girls flag football was approved by our Board of Managers, so I’m hopeful that will add more athletes and not just pull from other sports,” Bonacorsi said. “All the social media stuff, all the fan engagement stuff — I’m hopeful that will start to draw more people out. I think getting to freshmen is key.”

The reason why Bonacorsi aims to increase participation is to allow athletes to create new experiences. He believes that it is important to get freshmen involved in sports as it gives them time to build relationships while they are still adapting to high school. Bonacorsi recalls a previous athletic director, Ron Freeman, who passed away and received an influx of support not solely due to his work as athletic director but because of the relationships he formed.

“It was all about the connections and the relationships Freeman made with athletes over the years, and I thought that was amazing,” Bonacorsi said. “That’s something that definitely is meaningful to me. It’s the memories. It’s not ‘What did you win?’ ‘What was your record?’ ‘What were your stats?’”

Girls Basketball coach Sara Borelli believes that Bonacorsi is very helpful when dealing with logistics, which makes things easier for the coaches. She says that Bonacorsi manages the background tasks that need to be done such as clearances, so the coaches can focus more on preparing their athletes for success. Borelli also says that Bonacorsi’s flexibility, being open to feedback but also authoritative when needed, makes him a good athletic director. Bonacorsi says that he achieves this balance by having trust in his coaches.

“I view my job as more of a support system than a leadership system,” Bonacorsi said. “I want to help make them better. I want to help make their jobs easier. I want to help them support our athletes. I want to boost the athletic culture on campus. That’s the approach I take.”

Graphic by Lilian Wang

This trust in athletes and coaches ties into the Athletic Senate that Bonacorsi formed, which selects representatives from various sports to help form ideas and increase student participation in sports leadership. Bonacorsi says that many schools across the country and Southern California adopted an athletic senate to represent students’ voices, so he did the same to provide student-driven change. One such example he provided was the plan to bring back the Matador Olympics, where athletes group up and compete in various sports in order to try new things.

“I truly believe that some changes are more meaningful and more authentic when they come from athletes, not from me,” Bonacorsi said. “I think they’ve done a great job over the years coming up with different ideas, ways to get people engaged and ways to celebrate our athletes. I love that group, and I’m excited to see it expand and grow as we move forward.”

Kang agrees, stating that the outreach events that the athletic senate has hosted helped the department more generally. One such example is Matador Madness Athletics and Activities where incoming freshmen are able to view presentations on each sport offered at MVHS.

“I’m very appreciative of him for doing that,” Kang said. “If the younger guys get into sports now, they’ll have time to develop and then also just build a community. And I feel like that’s essential and I’m grateful for that.”

One event that Borelli appreciates Bonacorsi arranging is the women in sports event. This year, the annual event was held on Feb. 7, 2024. It helped put a spotlight on cheer, dance, girls basketball and girls soccer. The creation of this event shows that Bonacorsi has a clear commitment to equality in athletics.

“It was pitched in an athletic director meeting I was in and I immediately texted Ms. Borelli, and she said ‘I’m in,’” Bonacorsi said. “We’ve done it every year for seven years which has been great. It gets more fans in the seats, and it’s a great opportunity to celebrate our female athletes, who nationwide still struggle for the same equal opportunities that our boys have.”

Athletic Director Nick Bonacorsi poses with the Girls Varsity Basketball team after their CCS win. Photo courtesy of Carolyn Ruan


Borelli also said that she appreciates the shared values that she has with Bonacorsi, such as equality. She says that it is easier to book gym time for her girls under Bonacorsi, as he divides gym time equitably, especially at the beginning of the season when there is high demand.

“It’s been nice to have somebody steady in that position that we have the same ideas and beliefs in,” Borelli said. “It’s always been a little bit of a fight to get what the girls deserve, and I don’t feel that way with him. It’s all about equity, and every sport is equal in its position, so that’s been refreshing.”

About the Contributors
Ethan Kellogg
Ethan is currently a Junior and staff writer for El Estoque. He enjoys playing the trombone and playing video games. He is also a webmaster for the Model UN club.
Kaia Yuan
Kaia Yuan, Staff Writer
Kaia Yuan is currently a junior and a staff writer for El Estoque. In her free time, you can find her experimenting with recipes, making music or obsessing over the deliciousness of mochi donuts.
Ethan Yang
Ethan Yang is currently a sophomore and a staff writer for El Estoque. In his free time he likes running, FBLA and working with computers.
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