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New football coaches abound in 2019

We are only a week away from football starting up and there will be several new faces patrolling the sidelines during the 2019 season.

Four of the seven football teams in the county, including Billingsley, will have new head coaches heading into the year.

That means each school has made a coaching change within the past four years, and some have gone through two changes during that time.

The new coaches include Blake Bradley at Jemison, Phillip Coggins at Billingsley, Brad Abbott at Maplesville and Josh Robinson at Verbena.

Of the new crop of coaches, Abbott is the most familiar with his school after having been an assistant coach with the team for years.

Josh Robinson is also very familiar with Verbena, but is dealing with a much different situation than that of Maplesville.

His initial goal was to build up Verbena’s roster, and he has seemingly done a good job of that in the early going, while Abbott’s goal is to maintain the playoff and state title hopes Maplesville has become accustomed to over the years.

Bradley was familiar with Jemison after spending time as an assistant at West Blocton High School, who has been on the Panthers’ schedule of late.

Coggins brings a proven track record to Billingsley after leading Highland Home to the state semifinals in Class 2A last season.

The dean of Chilton County coaches is Tate Leonard at Isabella.

He suddenly finds himself with that rank following the departure of Brent Hubbert from Maplesville.

Leonard is about to begin his fourth year with the Mustangs, which is the longest uninterrupted tenure of any current coach, just beating out Tal Morrison at Chilton County High School and Daryl Davis at Thorsby by one year.

Stability is a key ingredient in the recipe for success, and these three programs have begun to find that sweet spot.