Features | Friday Night Drive

Christian Rago returns to his western suburban roots, excited to build culture at Aurora Central Catholic

AURORA – Christian Rago didn’t have much time before jumping into the deep end.

Rago, the former offensive assistant coach and offensive coordinator at St. Patrick High School in Chicago, accepted the head varsity coaching job at Aurora Central Catholic about 10 days prior to the Chargers beginning summer camp in June.

“The culture that I want to build is foremost – just building good people,” Rago said. “All the coaches I’ve been around, that’s been their drive; that’s something that they instilled in me, so first off, it’s building great young men in the program.

“Winning is great. Everyone wants to win, but there’s something about football and having the opportunity to be around a group of young men and showing them how to become better people and leave this place ready for life ahead.”

Rago succeeded John Belskis, who returned to the program for one season after leaving following the 2015 season.

“We talk about the standards of the program and we have two standards: Do the right thing and treat everyone with dignity and respect,” Rago said. “Anyone that is around the team or part of the team, [it’s about] to help them go on outside of football or outside of school, just in life. Be good people.”

Rago’s wife, Jenee, accepted the head strength and conditioning position at Aurora University last year to bring Rago’s family back to the western suburbs.

“Family was a big factor [to accept the position] and [also] the opportunity to be at a school that is just known to have great people,” Rago said.

Rago had previous coaching stops at Woodstock High School, his alma mater, and Aurora University as a graduate assistant football coach after his playing career at Aurora.

“Rago’s college-level coaching experience, enthusiasm and strong work ethic align well with our vision for ACC’s football program,” said Paul Mayer, principal at Aurora Central Catholic High School and Aurora area superintendent for the Rockford Diocese in a news release. “We’re excited to start a new chapter of Charger football under coach Rago and the future looks very bright.”