Texas Tech Legend takes over at Lubbock Estacado

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Lubbock ISD on Thursday announced the hiring of Wichita Falls City View offensive coordinator and former three-time All-Big 12 WR Eric Ward as the next head football coach at Lubbock Estacado. Ward replaces Will Blaylock, who resigned after leading the Matadors to a 10-3 record in 2023 to take over as head coach at Class 6A Cypress Ranch.

Ward, who is a graduate of Wichita Falls Rider, had a stellar playing career at Texas Tech where he was a three-time all-Big 12 wide receiver. He’s third on Tech’s all-time list in receptions and receiving touchdowns and stands fifth on the Red Raiders all-time list for receiving yards.

Ward began his coaching career at his alma mater Wichita Falls Rider. He’s also coached at Elgin, Burkburnett, Wichita Falls Hirschi and most recently was the offensive coordinator at Wichita Falls City View.

“I’m thrilled and excited to go back to Lubbock," Ward said. "I feel like Lubbock is home. I’m ready to pour into the kids at Estacado. My job is to not reinvent the wheel. We want to continue the rich tradition in East Lubbock."

Although most expect Estacado to be among the top teams in Region I at the 4A-Division II level, Ward’s late start will mean the summer will be vital as he builds a new staff and gets to know his new team. He won’t be given much of a grace period from the Estacado fanbase, which always has high expectation for their Matadors.

“I’ve got to build a staff with coaches that love kids," he said. "We of course want to hit the ground running with skills and drills and ensure the kids are in shape and conditioned, but I’ve got to get a staff in place so we can be ready for install and build relationships with the kids and the community."

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