This Week in TXHSFB: Big 7-on-7 News, Stephenville Makes a Change, Lockhart and Monahans Updates

Photo by John Murphy

LaPorte update
LaPorte ISD is moving forward with its process of finding a new head football coach after the departure of Jeff LaReau. LaPorte interviewed 10 candidates in its first round of interviews conducted last week and that list has been cut down to a group of finalists who went in for a second round of interviews this week with the intent to present a name to the school board on February 12. All indications are a Houston area defensive coordinator will be the guy for this job.

Lockhart has narrowed the field
Lockhart has narrowed its choices down to three finalists who will be in this week for the final round of interviews for its vacant head football coach/athletic cirector job. Two of the finalists are coordinators in the San Antonio area and the other is a former head coach in the Big Country. None of the finalists have a Slot-T background so it looks like the Lions will be opening up the offense some as we head into the 2019 season.

Winder out in Stephenville
Monday afternoon big news emerged from Erath County as Stephenville ISD announced head coach Greg Winder would not return for a fifth season in Stephenville. Winder posted a 26-22 mark in four seasons leading the ‘Jackets, including a 12-3 mark in 2017 and a trip to the 4A Division I state semifinals. There’s no question this is a job that still holds a lot of clout statewide and will generate plenty of interest from extremely qualified candidates.

River Oaks Castleberry tabs Haltom assistant Juan Silva
Castleberry ISD announced on Friday morning its next head football coach as Haltom co-defensive coordinator Juan Silva was tabbed to lead the Lions program. Silva has been an assistant coach on three state title teams in Pilot Point and two at Everman and also has spent time at Saginaw Chisholm Trail as an assistant before coming to Haltom where he also served as the head baseball coach.

Monahans interviews begin
Originally we thought Monahan was only bringing in eight candidates to interview for its vacant head football coach/athletic director role, but it looks like as many as 10 candidates could be in this week to interview. The interview pool definitely has a hometown feel with as many as four alums of Monahans High interviewing. Four current head coaches are in the field, one in the panhandle, one in the Permian Basin, one in the Big Country and one in the San Antonio area. One former head coach in the Concho Valley is also interviewing. There’s also coordinators from the Big Country, Concho Valley, Easy Texas and Austin interviewing along with another assistant from the Permian Basin.

Caddo Mills hires Kodi Crane
Caddo Mills for the first time since 2004 will have a new head football coach and the district looked south to Gonzales for its next coach as Kodi Crane was named as the school’s next head football coach/athletic director on Friday morning. Crane leaves Gonzales after seven years and a 37-43 record. Crane led the Apaches to the area playoffs three times in 2014, 2015 and 2018.

Jenkins steps aside at Tenaha
After one season serving in the dual role of head football and basketball coach at Tenaha, Greg Jenkins announced on Wednesday that he would step aside as head football coach but remain in the role of athletic director and boys basketball coach. In his one season serving in both roles, Jenkins posted a 10-4 mark and led the Tigers to the 2A Division I regional finals in their first year at the Division I level after moving up from Division II. OC Robert Tamplin, who has been in his role for the past four years, was promoted to head football coach.

Snook update
After its best season in school history in 2018 Snook is searching for a new football coach. DCTF spoke with Snook ISD superintendent Brenda Krchnak last week and she said that interviews for the vacancy will begin this week. If the process is smooth, a hire could be made by the February 18 board meeting and if a hire is not ready by then, she will request the board to call a special meeting to announce the hire.

“We had a great year last year and we want to keep that momentum going, I’d like to have someone in before Spring Break so our new coach can get his staff in place and get going with off-season and prepare for summer strength and conditioning,” said Krchnak.

Aledo adds another transfer
A couple of weeks ago it was learned Aledo picked up another big time weapon as Fort Worth Southwest 2022 ATH Bryan Allen moved in. Allen started all 11 games as a freshman at Southwest and already holds offers from Houston and Baylor. If he is ruled eligible to play his sophomore season, it’ll just add another major weapon to the already loaded defending 5A Division II State Champions.

Big 7-on-7 changes this summer
There was plenty of news from the past week as the Texas State 7-on-7 Board of Directors released their rule changes for the 2019 summer campaign along with the full schedule of State Qualifying Tournaments.

The most notable change will be the requirement of soft shell helmets beginning with the 2019 State Tournament and moving forward into 2020 with Qualifying Tournaments and the State Tournament. This move was in the works for a while, but was certainly accelerated summer after a horrifying injury to Arlington Lamar’s Brett Green at a SQT in Hurst. If not for the quick actions of athletic trainers and some parents who worked in the medical field, a serious injury could have been a tragedy. The rules state the soft shell helmets that will meet the requirements must be rated four or five star by Virginia Tech. The helmets must have no metal or hard plastic, no sharp edges and must have a fully functional chin strap or retention system.

Linked below is a list of the four and five star helmets that can be used:

https://www.helmet.beam.vt.edu/soccer-headgear-ratings.html

 

Also of note, the Division III State Tournament which debuted with 16 teams in 2018 for schools in Class 3A Division II and below will be expanded to 32 teams for 2019. This means we will see the number of Qualifying Tournaments for Division III increase from eight to as many as sixteen across the state.

The Division II State Tournament which featured 48 teams for Class 4A and 3A Division I teams in 2018, will see a reduction in teams in 2019 as the field will be condensed to 32 teams. This means there will also likely be a reduction on qualifying tournaments as last summer many of the Division II SQTs failed to fill up after the Division III split. This reduction should result in tournaments filling and more competitive tournaments.

In reference to tournament size, the state board also announced any tournaments that feature just eight teams will only qualify one team to the State Tournament which is a change from past years when all SQTs advanced at least two teams to College Station.

The 2019 7-on-7 State Tournament will again be held at Veterans Park in College Station with the Division II and III tournament being held June 27-28, with the Division I State Tournament being held June 28-29.

State Qualifying will kick off April 27 with a Division I SQT in Frisco and will wrap up June 22 in Rowlett, while Division II SQT play starts up May 11 in Lorena and wraps up June 15 in Celina, Tuscola and McAllen. Division III SQT play starts May 25 in Buffalo, Ganado, Hamilton and Wink and wraps up June 15 in Blooming Grove and Sonora.

The full list of qualifiers can be found at http://www.texas7on7.org

It’s officially clinic season in the state of Texas and if you have coaching clinic information that we are missing below by all means send it our way! You can e-mail it to me at matt.stepp@texasfootball.com or reach out to me on twitter @Matt_Stepp817

February 6: THSCA FAST Tackling Clinic, Lubbock

February 8-10: Lone Star Clinic, College Station

February 13: THSCA FAST Tackling Clinic, McAllen

February 15-16: Hill Country Clinic, Fredericksburg

February 15-16: South Plains Clinic, Lubbock

February 16: Farmersville Clinic, Farmersville

February 20: THSCA FAST Tackling Clinic, Longview

March 6: THSCA FAST Tackling Clinic, El Paso

May 3-4: I-45 Clinic, The Woodlands

May 3-4: El Paso Football Clinic, El Paso

June 11-13: Angelo Football Clinic, San Angelo

July 21-23: 2017 THSCA Coaches Convention & Coaching School, Houston

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Matt Stepp is the Texas High School Football Inside for Dave Campbell’s Texas Football. Find him on Twitter: @Matt_Stepp817.

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