McKinney to Name Alum as Next Head Coach

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McKinney ISD is expected to welcome McKinney High alum Nate Leonard as the Lions' next head football coach.

Leonard, who comes over from New Braunfels Canyon, will have some big shoes to fill as he replaces Marcus Shavers, who stepped down in December. Shavers led the Lions to a regional semifinal in 2022 and posted playoff appearances in four of his six seasons at the helm. 

Leonard, a first-year head coach in 2023, led the Cougars to a 7-4 record and a playoff appearance. He was named head coach on February 23 to replace Travis Bush, who was named the first ever head football coach at the University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley.

Leonard played his college football at UT-San Antonio and was a four-year letterman for the Roadrunners, earning all-conference honors his senior season. He spent time in the San Antonio area as an assistant coach at San Antonio Memorial, San Antonio Reagan, Seguin and New Braunfels Canyon.

The new McKinney head coach was also an assistant coach at Clear Lake and he spent time as a graduate assistant at Duke University in 2018.

Leonard returns home to take over a McKinney program that made the regional semifinals in 2022 and posted a strong 9-3 mark in 2023. But the Lions lost a highly decorated senior class and most likely will see plenty of staff turnover as Leonard takes over.

With New Braunfels Canyon opening, Comal ISD now has two head coaching positions open as Canyon Lake opened in December after Charles Drum’s retirement. Unfortunatley for New Braunfels Canyon, the program will be on its third head coach in three seasons as it makes the move back to Class 6A in 2024. 

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