Brad Waggoner has accepted the football head coaching position at Chattooga High School. The Fayetteville native will begin work at Chattooga on Jan. 6.
“I look forward to being a head coach in Georgia,” Coach Waggoner said.
The 33-year-old coach was the head coach for Pike County (Ala.) High School last fall in his first year there.
Before going to Pike County, he was the head coach at Luverne (Ala.) High School. He led them to three playoff appearances and two region championships in three seasons. His overall record there was 25-11.
He followed former Alabama Head Coach Mike DuBose at Luverne and followed Wayne Grant at Pike County. Grant had won state championships in 1988, 1989, 2003, 2005 and 2006 and was 12-1 the year before Waggoner took over. Grant’s overall record was 185-59.
Waggoner took over in January at Douglas High in Marshall County, Ala. in north Alabama. The bachelor was living out of the locker room as he waited to sell his house in Luverne. Then he got the call to coach at Luverne and left Douglas, so he didn’t have to sell his house after all.
Waggoner said there were hurt feelings in Douglas but he couldn’t turn down the chance to move back home where he was an assistant.
“The philosophy of the program will be discipline,” Coach Waggoner said. “You can always have great athletes, but you have to teach kids to be committed.”
He said a program like Calhoun that has won the region the last seven or eight years – have discipline in their program and also a lot of great athletes.
“We are going to run a disciplined program,” he said. “We are going to work hard in the weight room. We are going to be the most conditioned of any football team we will go against.”
He said the Indians will be fundamentally sound in everything they do.
“Obviously with great athletes you will win and with fundamentally sound athletes – that will be the philosophy of our program,” Coach Waggoner said.
He said the team would run an offense that will adapt to the talent at Chattooga High School.
“We will look at what we have here but looking right off the bat we have two very good running backs coming back, so we probably will make the offense around the two running backs,” Waggoner said.
He said depending on who is at quarterback and what the team has in the way of receivers will determine the offense along with the back returning.
Coach Waggoner has already seen four game films from last year. He is also familiar with Calhoun since his best friend from growing up is coaching there now.
He added that he was also familiar with Armuchee, Adairsville and Pepperell programs.
“I look at this region and it is a tough region,” Coach Waggoner said. “All the teams are located close to each other and I think here at Chattooga we have a chance to win the region but it will take a lot of hard work and a lot of discipline in every area of the program.”
He said the team needs to get stronger and that would help the team to be more disciplined.
“We have a lot of work to do from January to spring practice and then August. I am excited about getting started and your team is made during that time.”
Principal Morgan Nugent said, “One of the things that have impressed me about Coach Waggoner is that he is a community man. He is at ballgames, speaking at churches. He really brings the community back into the school.”
Nugent said that is what the school was trying to do is to bring the community back into the school.
“We are excited to have Coach Waggoner on board,” Principal Nugent said. “He is a hard worker.”
Waggoner follows John Starr at Chattooga. Starr was let go during the season last fall.
‘When you follow another coach you learn to be your own person,” Waggoner said after following DuBose, Grant and Starr.
“The bottom line is I am from Georgia and my family is only an hour and a half away where they were almost four hours before,” Coach Waggoner said. “I didn’t know it would take five years, but my goal was to come back to Georgia to be a head football coach. There’s nothing like going back home to coach. I played high school in Georgia and played in college in Georgia and I look forward to be coaching in Georgia.”