The Turnaround – A special thanks and goodbye

by Jason Strunk
Lubbock High School Head Football Coach
Follow @WestTXCoach

Coach Willingham

Coach Jake Willingham is moving on to Ennis HS (Texas) to coach with his father.

I preach continuity at LHS.  Returning the same coaches every year is hard in football, but we have been able to weather that storm for three years. Our luck has finally run out.

Three years ago I hired Jake Willingham to come in and call the offense. He was young, brash (he will tell you that himself) and full of energy. He was a great addition to our staff. He helped us break that dreaded thirty-six year playoff drought.

Over the last three seasons Jake has had opportunities to go elsewhere. He always chose to stay. This time however, it was a no-brainer. He is heading home to Ennis HS to coach the defending State Champs and to join his dad, Paul, on the Lions staff.

I could not be more happy for Jake and his family. As a head coach I want my guys to become head coaches. This is a great step for Jake in that process. He is well on his way.

The thing most critical component to any staff is loyalty. I always knew where Jake stood with that. Being a coaches’ son, he learned early what loyalty is all about. It is a trait that cannot be under-estimated. Loyalty goes a long way in building programs. We took our lumps together, but every Saturday morning Jake was there battling for our kids and the program.

We owe Jake Willingham a big thanks. He has done a lot for our program and all the players who wore black and gold. You will be hearing from this guy soon. He is going to be a tremendous head coach in the very near future.

Thanks, Jake!

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.