High school football coaching turnover rates soar in Florida, California

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It seems coaching high school football in hotbeds such as Southern California and Florida can be just as demanding as the NFL or NCAA, according to numbers reported by a recruiting service for coaches.

A whopping 114 of the 601 high schools in Southern California changed head football coaches this offseason, according to Eight Laces Consulting founder Chris Fore, who has served as an athletic director for six years in the past and is a special teams coach at Sultana High. He also is on the board of the California Coaches Association.

Hacienda Heights (Calif.) Wilson’s recent announcement of Ryan Bateman completed the hiring of all 114 head coaches, per Fore, a turnover rate of 19 percent among all available such jobs in SoCal.

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Believe it or not, that number is actually low compared to high school football head coaching jobs in Florida, where an estimated 129 of the 560 available jobs turned over since Aug. 1, 2015, according to FloridaHSFootball.com.

Those numbers fall in line with the turnover rates for higher levels of football, where one might think the job is more demanding. At the college level, 24 of the 128 Football Subdivision Series schools (19 percent) changed head coaches from 2015 to 2016. Likewise, the NFL will roll out seven new head coaches for the second consecutive fall, a year-to-year turnover rate of 22 percent.

Is a prioritization of winning over character-building at fault for these high turnover rates? Are the demands of the job so high that coaches are being burned out quicker than ever? Or is an older generation giving way to younger coaches in a new era of football? These are all questions the coaches associations in Florida, Texas and every state should begin asking themselves.

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About the Author

Jeff Fisher
Jeff is an award-winning journalist and expert in the field of high school sports, underscored with his appearance on CNBC in 2010 to talk about the big business of high school football in America. Jeff turned to his passion for high school football into an entrepreneurial venture called High School Football America, a digital media company focused on producing original high school sports content for radio, television and the internet. Jeff is co-founder and editor-in-chief of High School Football America, which is a media partner with USA TODAY High School Sports.