When you're in North Jersey, you're Famiglia

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Dave Sollazzo

\ The topic came up again today, as Seth Hoffman of scout.com asked if the New York roots of Friedgen and Sollazzo helped recruit the Garden State.\

\ “I think Sollazzo is the perfect guy to recruit up there,” coach Ralph Friedgen said. “He fits in very, very well. He’s a Goombah and everybody likes him. It’s a different breed up there. The coaches are unique.”\

\ Now, he didn’t mean this kind of Goomba. Sorry, Mario, but the accurate description of Sollazzo — a leather-lunged defensive line coach who I hope owns stock in a throat lozenge company — is in another castle.\

\ He meant this kind, which Mirriam-Webster’s online dictionary kindly describes.\

\ There’s “a close friend or associate — used especially among Italian-American men,” which sort of works. Then there’s “a member of a secret chiefly Italian-American crime organization,” and as vociferous and entertaining as Sollazzo can be at times, he isn’t Tony Soprano.\

\ Then there’s the perfect description: “A macho Italian-American man.”\

\ I\0x2019d guess Sollazzo would wear that description as a badge of honor.\

\ — Patrick Stevens

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