Hopkinton, MA
Hopkinton, US
12:23 am, Saturday, September 23, 2023


Andrade steps in as new HHS athletic director

by | Jul 17, 2023 | Featured: Sports, Sports

Ricky Andrade

Ricky Andrade is in charge of the athletics program at Hopkinton High School. PHOTO/JERRY SPAR

Hopkinton High School tapped former Needham High School assistant athletic director Ricardo “Ricky” Andrade as the program’s new athletic director, and he said he heads to his new role with big plans to expand student participation in all aspects of athletics.

“I am absolutely excited; it’s a great opportunity in a school district that truly cares about not just academics and athletics, but the overall well-rounded student experience,” Andrade said. “I see a lot of similarities to Needham, and that’s kind of what drew me in from the start.”

Andrade, 31, played three sports at Cardinal Spellman High School in Brockton — soccer, indoor track and outdoor track — before attending Boston College and earning an undergraduate degree. He started his career as a beer salesman but said he found the work unfulfilling.

“I looked at what made me happy and what I wanted to get into,” he said. “An area I thought would be something I would love to be in was athletics and education.”

Andrade coached in Needham for a couple of years, working with soccer, middle school track and unified track and field. He also helped out in the athletic department, taking the bus when a coach could not make it with a particular team or providing game coverage for hockey or basketball.

Andrade worked as a teaching assistant within the Special Education Department and went back to school to earn a master’s degree in sports leadership from Northeastern. He stepped away from Needham for a year to do an internship with the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) and returned to the school in 2020, eventually stepping into the role of assistant AD.

“The last couple of years I have been working hand in hand with the AD and learning how the day-to-day operations go,” Andrade said. “I’ve been working with student-athletes, working with coaches, and getting a good feel for how athletics is run.”

In the short term, Andrade said he wants to see the Hillers’ success on the field and in the classroom continue. He also hopes to add new programs, including boys volleyball and girls flag football, both of which have been successful at Needham.

Andrade said he also is looking to give students opportunities to be involved in sports even if they are not on a team.

“One of the things I have talked about is having a sports media and sports journalism branch of athletics,” he said. “I am hoping to get that started and put it in motion this year, so we have a student voice and students able to talk about the teams in the school and their friends and how athletics plays a huge part in the community.”

Andrade noted the increase in enrollment over the past decade and said that most of Hopkinton’s teams soon will be in Division 1.

“I want to develop and help student-athletes so they are ready to compete against some of the best schools in the state and make deep runs in the tournament,” he said. “Hopkinton was an opportunity that I had to take, and I am truly grateful for the opportunity and excited for what is to come.”