By TOMMY BRYAN, sports editor
Lebanon High principal Myra Sloan has organized a committee to aid her in the search for a new Blue Devil head football coach. Joining Sloan on the committee are LHS assistant principal Jonathan Hall, former NFL player and local TYFA organizer Mike Jones, longtime Lebanon supporter Larry Tomlinson and Devilette basketball coach Larry Joe Inman.
Sloan, midway through her first year as LHS principal, is tasked with finding a replacement for Bobby Brown, who resigned in mid-December after nine seasons and a record of 44-51.
“I have high expectations and only quality applicants will be interviewed,” Mrs. Sloan said. “My number one priority is to hire a person of character and integrity -- someone that will be a role model and inspiration for our students.”
The school system’s human resources department will serve as the initial point of contact for applicants, not Principal Sloan.
“For this and all other positions, we only consider applications submitted through our Wilson County Schools website,” said Mary Ann Sparks, Human Resources Supervisor for Wilson County Schools. “As those applications are received, they are reviewed for teaching credentials and work history.
“Those applicants who are not eligible to teach under guidelines from the State Department of Education are not be included on the list which is sent to the principal.”
Here is an excerpt from the job posting: Qualified applicant must hold, or be eligible for, a valid Tennessee teaching license with 7-12 endorsement. Endorsements in English, Math, Special Education, Science or Physical Education preferred. A highly qualified status in the appropriate endorsement/content area is also required.
It is believed the job will continue to be posted online at wcschools.com and tssaa.org until it is filled. Mrs. Sparks indicated interviews of initial applicants could begin shortly.
Coach Brown’s nine-year tenure at Lebanon was the longest since Clifton Tribble retired in the mid 1960s. He was hired by former LHS principal Kip Puryear following the 2001 season to replace Ron “Moose” Marshall.
Prior to his tenure at Lebanon, Brown was an assistant coach for nine seasons at Trousdale County High where he worked under Clint Satterfield
Marshall, now the head coach at Gordonsville High, went 16-25 in four seasons (1998-2001) at Lebanon.
Prior to Marshall, Bob Dillard had four seasons as head coach of the Blue Devils (1994-1997) with a record of 18-26.
Dillard’s predecessor was Mark Medley, who in seven seasons (1987-1993) went 64-18 overall and qualified every single year for the TSSAA playoffs.
Over the last 25 years, Lebanon High has employed five head football coaches who have gone a combined 143-129, a winning percentage of .525. Removing the Medley years from the equation, Lebanon went a combined 78-102 under Dillard, Marshall and Brown over the last 17 seasons, 24 games under .500 -- a .433 winning percentage. None of the three coaches during that time frame had any head coaching experience prior to taking on the Lebanon job.
Despite the fact Lebanon is coming off four consecutive six-loss seasons, and the base salary here is well below those in neighboring Rutherford and Sumner Counties, the opening has reportedly drawn initial interest from well over 20 persons with various levels of coaching experience.
Current Lebanon High assistant coaches Eric Lawrence, Tim Lounsbury, Amariah Robb and Brody Ferrell are supervising the after school off-season weight lifting / conditioning program.