New Faces on the Field: SSISD has had unusually busy summer filling coaching vacancies created by relocation, retirement, maternity leave and promotion
Bobby "Butch" Burney | News-Telegram Sports Editor

July 13, 2005 - Just when it looks like they've got everything ironed out, another coaching wrinkle pops up for SSISD administrators.

The latest situation, in which head volleyball and softball coach John McCullough received a promotion to assistant high school principal, hopefully will be the last in what has been a steady stream of coaching vacancies at the SSISD and most particularly at Sulphur Springs High School.

There have been a dozen coaching changes within the district, and for a lot of different reasons.

Three coaches decided to teach only, another moved because he is marrying, three others relocated for other jobs, two female coaches are having babies, one retired and another was promoted.

That means athletic director Dwayne McMeans - who is going part time as A.D. - has had an unusually busy summer. He is currently in Austin at the girls coaches' clinic to recruit a volleyball/softball coach.

There are currently four jobs (volleyball and softball are combined) which are technically open at SSHS, though two of those positions have candidates which McMeans will propose to the school board soon for acceptance.

Of the 15 sports at the high school, eight of them will have new head coaches next year.

Boys basketball - Jeff Carroll moves from an assistant position at Crowley to take over for Steve Glover, who requested a teaching only position.

Baseball - Jarrod Hammack, formerly at Whitehouse, takes over for Rahn Smith, who will be the head girls golf coach in place of Rodney Barthelemess, who took a football coordinator's spot in Hallsville.

Girls basketball - Carin Bryant asked to be reassigned to teach science at SSMS, where her husband coaches. They are expecting a child this winter. Bryant also coached girls track, which will likely be filled from within the current staff.

Volleyball and softball - McCullough took the softball team to the playoffs for five straight seasons and led the volleyball team to a playoff berth in his only year as head coach of that sport. He was awarded the high school assistant principal's job Monday by the school board.

Powerlifting - Dean Lasseter took a job in Lone Oak, where he lives. Veteran football coach Larry Sherman was hired in his spot.

Other coaching vacancies which have been filled included assistant girls basketball job vacated by Kamilla Musser to stay home with her daughter who was born last week, which was filled by Linda Rankin; and several assistant football spots including Brady Ross, who will take Donnie Martin's place; and Matt Regar, who will work at the SSMS position vacated by the retirement of Dennis Tomlin. Kell Clopton turned in his resignation to move to the metroplex and Josh Ragsdale moved to Crandall to relocate with his fiance, but McMeans and head football coach Brad Turner have candidates in mind for those spots.

Turner said he has no doubts the remaining places on the coaching staff will be filled soon, though it has been an unusually active summer.

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