New Hampshire Football Report

Yukica Profile: Evan Haskins

NOTE: The 2020 Joe Yukica New Hampshire Chapter of the National Football Foundation Scholar/Athlete banquet was cancelled this year because of COVID-19. Each Scholar/Athlete will be recognized with a commemorative program, a plaque and a personal profile that will appear in the program, on the New Hampshire Football Report, the Joe Yukica/New Hampshire Chapter web site ( and the Joe Yukica/New Hampshire Chapter Facebook page. This is one in a series of 39 profiles. Once published, each profile can be accessed by clicking on the athlete’s name at the bottom of the page.

Pelham High School

Pelham High School football coach Tom Babaian said he’s never come across a player who showed more effort or had a better work ethic than center/middle linebacker Evan Haskins, but Babaian wasn’t describing Haskins’ on-field traits. He was talking about Haskins as a student.

“He’s probably devoted to academics more than any other kid I’ve coached,” Babaian said. “It’s unbelievable the amount of time he’ll put in for something that seems very trivial to other kids. He’s like the quarterback in the NFL who’s elite, but puts in more time than anybody else too.”

Haskins, who ranks first academically in a class of 158, plans to enter the Air Force. He’s a National Merit Scholarship winner, and a member of the National Honor Society, the Math Honor Society, the Science Honor Society and the Spanish Honor Society. 

His competitive nature extends to athletics as well. Haskins finished the 2019 season with 29 solo tackles, 31 assisted tackles, 2.5 sacks and two interceptions. He served as a co-captain for the Pythons last season, and also competed for the Pelham varsity wrestling and lacrosse teams.

His academic and athletic excellence earned Haskins the 2020 Scholar/Athlete Award from the Joe Yukica New Hampshire Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame.

“He puts every ounce of energy he has into what he’s doing at that particular time,” Babaian said. “He does work very, very hard at everything he does. Not only does he have the grades, he works at it so hard so nobody’s going to beat him.

“He had an interception against Hollis/Brookline, which was a tremendous interception, but then he was running back on the return and he got stripped by the quarterback. He never forgot that. That sat with him through practice, through every other game we played. The attention to detail he put into ball security after that … that was never going to happen to him again.” 

Haskins was selected to play in the CHaD New Hampshire East/West All-Star Game, but won’t be able to participate because of an academic commitment. Babaian described Haskins as the team’s best defensive player. 

“Because he’s so smart he understood where he had to be based on what the offense was doing and he was always in the right spot,” Babaian said. “In terms of his personality, he’s a normal kid. You’d never know he was the smartest kid in the room. The only thing that’s different between him and other kids is once you engage him in conversation, as an adult you quickly realize he’s much smarter than you are. 

“His parents have always put the scholar before the athlete.”

 Q and A with Evan Haskins

Q: Please describe the most memorable moment of your high school football career. 

A: During junior year I was playing inside linebacker toward the end of a game while we were winning. I got the calls in from my coach, telling me to blitz the A gap. I timed it well, got straight through the line untouched, took the handoff from the QB and ran it back 35 yards for the touchdown. 

Q: Tell us about someone who has had a significant influence on your life.

A: My parents have had the biggest impact on my life by far. They always emphasized the importance of education, making sure I knew that my homework had to be done before I could go do anything else. My dad inspired my love for football, always playing with my brothers and me in the backyard and teaching me to become a center just like my brother. My mom was always there to get me to practices and games because my dad was a coach, and she even became a part of the Friends of Pelham High Football to get as close to my football experience as she could.

Q: What is your favorite subject in school and why?

A: My favorite subject in school is math. For a long time, it has come more easily to me than to others, which I am grateful for. Also, math isn’t one of those subjects where you just have to memorize information and write it down on a test. There are some formulas you have to remember, but for the most part, it is conceptual, and once you understand the concept you can apply it to various problems. 

Q: What life lessons have you learned from football? 

A: Football has taught me a lot of lessons that I have carried through me in life, such as discipline being important for a team to function efficiently, hard work making you stand out from the pack, and strong leadership being important to a team. 

Q: What is your dream job? 

A: I truly hope to be able to have the opportunity to be a pilot upon graduation from the US Air Force Academy. 


2020 Scholar/Athletes: Keith Albergo (Winnacunnet), Thatcher Allen (Exeter), Cole Ames (Lebanon), Mason Belsky (Windham), Patrick Brust (Bishop Brady)Jaedon Cliche (Exeter), Riley Desmarais (Windham), Bobby DiCicco (Windham), Jared Dyer (Merrimack), Casey Gladu (Portsmouth), Owen Gormley (Salem), Jack Grogan (Bedford), Steven Guerette (Bow), Evan Haskins (Pelham), Samson Hodges (Milford), Ethan Holt (Bishop Guertin), Jack Jones (Bedford), Charlie Kneissl-Williams (Bedford), Hunter Lassard (St. Thomas), Joseph Lupo (Bishop Guertin), Jake MacInnis (Pinkerton), Braden McDonnell (Nashua South), Will MacLean (St. Thomas), Hayden Moses (Bishop Guertin), Riley Mulvey (Salem), Kyle O’Connor (Nashua South), Nolan Pafford (Portsmouth), Wade Rainey (Lebanon), Ismael Rivera (Bishop Brady), Oceanne Skoog (Newfound), Caleb Smith (Lebanon), Rolando Sylvain-Stott (Newfound), John Thibault (Trinity), Zach Twardosky (Merrimack), Gavin Urda (Milford), Carter Vedrani (Campbell), Jacob Wenger (Trinity), Jon Willeman (Lebanon) and Devin Wood (Merrimack).

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