Dinner with their high school coaches. That’s what’s at stake for sports radio tandem Gregg “Gio” Giannotti and Boomer Esiason in Saturday’s big high school football game between Sayville and East Islip.
With Giannotti now living in Sayville and Esiason being a proud East Islip alumnus, the “Boomer & Gio Show” hosts got to talking a little smack Friday on their morning radio show on WFAN.
Caller “Mike in Nesconset” kicked things off during the fourth quarter of the broadcast, suggesting the hosts engage in a “friendly wager” on the matchup of unbeatens taking place Oct. 16 at 2 p.m. at Sayville High School.
After haggling over whether to bet on a high school football game, Esiason and Giannotti settled on the loser having to take the other out to dinner, along with their own high school football coaches.
This is where it gets fairly interesting — because Esiason’s high school coach was the legendary Sal Ciampi, with whom the retired NFL quarterback remains extremely tight with and credits much of his success. And Giannotti’s varsity coach at East Islip rival Bellport was the equally esteemed Joe Cipp Jr.
“We’ll reminisce … and they can fight with each other,” Esiason quipped.
Giannotti enthusiastically added, “Oh my goodness, then it would be amazing. It would be a nice thing to take them out.”
Sayville and East Islip are both 5-0, and have run roughshod over their opponents in Suffolk County’s Division III.
Sayville, which went undefeated and earned the Rutgers Trophy last spring as Suffolk’s most outstanding team, is coming off a 42-14 route of Rocky Point. They have outscored their opponents, 169-51.
East Islip has outscored its opponents, 214-57. On Saturday, they walloped Half Hollow Hills West, 42-7.
The big game is the centerpiece of Sayville’s homecoming weekend. The outcome will likely determine who takes the top seed in the Division III playoffs.
“If I had to put a line on it, I’d say Sayville: minus five-and-a-half,” Giannotti said, anointing his daughters’ future high school as the favorites. “My daughters are going to be Golden Flashes,” he noted later.
The dinner wager grew a bit more interesting later when another caller brought to Esiason’s attention that the game would be played on grass at Sayville High School, rather than the turf field where the Golden Flashes play most of their home games on Friday nights.
“I’ll buy them grass shoes. No problem. We can get them grass shoes,” Esiason said, replying to a potential concern of East Islip having to play on grass instead of turf. He added that current East Islip coach Sal Ciampi Jr. hasn’t called him to complain.
“(But) if he needs shoes … he’s got Under Armour shoes — tomorrow,” Esiason said.
But Giannotti wasn’t having any of it.
“No, no, no. You can’t get involved in this now. You made a bet. You made a bet with me. You can’t now help them out,” he said.
Boomer insisted, though: “If they need shoes, I’m going to get them shoes.”
“Now, you’re inserting yourself into the wager. You’re now fixing games,” Giannotti cracked.
Esiason had the final word: “I’m just making sure my team has a fair shake.”
Giannotti, a fairly new Sayville resident, then shifted his worries to what he’ll wear to the big game.
“I have a Sayville football hat,” he said, while noting the Golden Flashes’ “purple and yellow” colors. “I have Vikings stuff I can wear.”
Boomer and Gio’s Sayville-East Islip ‘friendly wager’ exchange
Listen below to Esiason and Giannotti’s entire discussion about the East Islip-Sayville game.
Above image: WFAN/Boomer & Gio Show