JAMESTOWN, N.Y. (WIVB) – While the rest of the world is now starting to see who Nick Sirianni is, those closest to him saw that same personality growing up as a kid in Jamestown.
“He’s bold, he believes in what he’s doing and he believes in himself, so Nick is fearlessly himself. When he’s on the sideline he’s who he is, he’s not trying to be someone that someone else thinks he should be,” Tom Langworthy said.
“He puts his emotions out there, he doesn’t hide it, that’s who he is,” Jay Sirianni explained.
Tom Langworthy grew up a street over from Nick and played football together from when they were kids through their senior year at Southwestern High School. Throughout the years, their friend group has stayed strong even as Nick climbed the NFL ranks to now in his second season as head coach of the Eagles.
“To me and my friends group it’s still Nick, you know and it’s still the Nick that we’ve always known and loved and now we’re just seeing him get the attention that he’s earned on the big stage so we’re all excited for him,” Langworthy said.
If you’ve watched an Eagles game or heard one of Nick’s press conferences, his seems to have this larger than life, no fear kind of mentality and was asked about that ahead of the Super Bowl. Where does it come from?
“A lot of it’s gonna come from getting the crap kicked out of me by my two older brothers playing basketball with them, playing football with them, tackle football with them in the living room with them, having boxing matches with them with the couch pillows hitting each other with those,” Nick said at Super Bowl media day in Arizona.
“Listen, in the backyard we needed a tackling dummy and Nick was there for that,” Jay Sirianni laughed.
Nick grew up with two older brothers, Mike and Jay. And while Mike is nine years older than Nick and Jay is six years older than him, those two helped shape who Nick is today. So did their mom and dad.
“I felt like I just had great parents [Fran and Amy Sirianni] that raised me. The no fear that’s definitely, you know I have a dad that went through cancer two times when I was growing up, one time when I was about four years old, one time when I was about eight, it came back on him and that’s how he was. I never really knew was bothering him, nothing ever really bothered him,” Nick said.
“He was able to fight through everything and so that’s a different type of mental toughness that I was raised with from my dad that he’s had to go through a lot of crap in his life and he just puts his head down and fights and keeps going to the next so I think a lot of that’s gonna come from him.”
And that’s where his pride and love for the Jamestown community comes from too.
“Southwestern is special to us. My dad was a teacher here, my dad was the head football coach here from the 1970’s to the 1980’s. I mean Mike, Nick and I literally grew up on the practice fields here. We were at practice every day with my dad in the summer,” Jay explained.
“I know he still reads the Post Journal Saturday morning online and he checks in on Southwestern and he checks in with Jamestown,” Tom said.
Tom is the head coach of Jamestown football and even said no matter how hectic Nick’s schedule gets, he’ll get a “good luck” text before Friday night football. Nick even sent a video message to the Red Raiders when they couldn’t have an in person guest because of Covid.
And now Tom and their friend group along with Jay and the rest of Nick’s family will be there in person cheering him on as he tries to bring a Lombardi Trophy back to their hometown.
“I can feel it from people at Southwestern that are just like, this is us because Nick is one of us and Nick is there and it’s the whole community that has a chance, man has a chance to win a Lombardi Trophy, it’s unbelievable,” Jay shared.
Heather Prusak is a sports reporter who joined the News 4 team in 2020. See more of her work here.