State Champion Head Coach Randall Bouldin Resigns at Whitwell, More Questions than Answers for TigerTown
Editor and Co-Founder | Chandler Morrison
Nobody laughed at the Whitwell Tigers and Class 1A’s reboot of Sean McVay in early December as they held up the State Championship trophy on a rainy, dreary day in Cookeville.
Nobody dared to think that this team was not one of destiny as they triumphed over South Pittsburg for the first time since 1991 or when they fought past Greenback for the a title berth or that classic 7-6 dogfight against a fiesty Cornersville team in that title game.
Gone were the days of the laughing stock of the Sequatchie Valley. Gone were the talks of 9 coaches in 14 years. Gone was the dysfunction of old.
Until Wednesday when head coach Randall Bouldin resigned for personal reasons to take a job at his alma mater, Waverly High School.
Now, the Tigers are on the prowl for their 10th head coach in 16 years very late in the offseason coaching carousel. And the jungle is congested as Whitwell is one of 17 teams currently looking for a head coach at the moment.
Just when TigerTown got a glimpse of what it meant to be a powerhouse, or at least an elite team, one simple move may send them back into mediocrity. This may still be a 7-3 or 8-2 program because of their–let’s face it–weak district schedule outside of South Pittsburg, but at this point, there’s not a lot of head coaches willing to run to Whitwell. And that’s merely because brief success is not always a catalyst for fertile coaching grounds, even with the kind of promise you might expect with a State Championship-caliber program.
The one coach that was in 2017, when Tracy Malone resigned, reaped the benefits of believing in a program that no one else did. And frankly, with a lot of players (and key players) leaving to graduation, there’s not many coaches that believe lightning can strike twice. There are still great athletes, but the depth will fade within the next few years if the program is not taken care of like it was under Bouldin.
What Whitwell needs at the moment is a coach that is willing to put in long hours and stay for the long hall to build a program and not a team. We have seen that with the right players, some depth, and some luck in the injury department, even a school with the history of Whitwell’s can win a State Title in football.
Another state title will not come for a coach that wants to build a team. The next coach must come in to build a program or the overwhelming coach stat line that baffles all of us will continue to grow. Tigertown needs to get this hire right or we could see 15 coaches in 25 years. That’s not a knock on this program, but do we really want to see a repeat of pre-Boldin football?
Boldin led this team to a State Title and (let me be clear) built a program before having to leave for personal reason beyond the gridiron, and the next coach needs to follow in his footsteps by not building a team and building a program.
Short List for Possible Head Coaches
- Derrick Davis (Former Polk County Head Coach)
- Chad Barger (Former Sequatchie County Head Coach)
- Glen Ryan (Former Walker Valley Head Coach)
- Hire from within
- It’s possible that a hire could come from within in order to keep the flow of the offensive and defensive schemes and to give this team some continuity that they have lacked in previous years.