Eric Mangini Football Fundamentals Camp returning to Hartford Saturday

Photo of Mike Anthony

The Eric Mangini Football Fundamentals Camp is returning to Hartford on Saturday after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic.

Mangini, the Hartford native who went on to coach the Jets and Browns, will run the camp for players in grades 8-12 Saturday on the grounds of Colt Park, and Sports and Medical Sciences Academy on Huyshope Avenue.

Players and volunteers can register at Player registration will be capped at 350.

Mangini, a 1989 Bulkeley High graduate, has run the one-day skills camp since 2002, when he was a Patriots assistant on Bill Belichick’s staff.

The camp benefits the Carmine and Frank Mangini Foundation and typically features a large roster of well-known volunteer instructors — from former NFL players and coaches to local high school coaches, including recently-retired Hartford Public High coach Harry Bellucci, who is Mangini’s brother-in-law.

The no-contact camp, which begins at 8 a.m., will follow COVID-19 guidance from the CIAC, the state’s governing body for high school sports, and activities will be conducted with an aim to align with recommendations from the City of Hartford and the Hartford Public Schools system.

The camp is mostly an outdoor event but masks will be recommended for brief indoor periods. A limited number of masks will be available on site.

Mangini, 51, a standout nose guard at Wesleyan University, coached the Jets in 2006-2008, finishing 10-6 and making the playoffs in his debut season. Briefly known as “Mangenius,” his popularity led to an appearance in HBO’s “The Sopranos.” He was fired after the 2008 season, when the Jets lost four of their final five games to finish 9-7 and miss the playoffs.

Mangini, who won three Super Bowls as a Patriots assistant, coached the Browns for two seasons, going 5-11 in both 2009 and 2010. He last coached in the NFL as the 49ers defensive coordinator in 2015 and has since worked in television.