Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Hiatt joins Gryphon football coaching staff

What do the following high schools have in common: Harnett Central, West Carteret, Richmond County, Millbrook, North Surry, Lexington, Richlands, Lenoir (West Caldwell), Valdese (East Burke)?

No clue?

All nine have had a head football coach named Ed Hiatt. Hiatt, 68, is joining Rocky Mount's varsity football staff this summer and will coach the defensive line. He is a Mt. Airy native and a Presbyterian College grad who currently resides in Durham.

After being in the coaching business for almost 40 years, Rocky Mount head football coach B.W. has a network the FBI would be envious of. There doesn't seem to be a gridiron coach worth his salt that Holt doesn't know or have regular contact with - active or retired.

So when he needed another assistant for his staff (he may add as many as two new ones this summer), he cruised around that network and found a much-traveled, but a multi-dimensional coach to add to his staff. You might have called him early in his career a self-professed reviver of down football programs.

The two have known each other for some 25 years. Holt asked him to join the staff and Hiatt jumped at the chance to work with his old friend.

Hiatt started working with the RM program this week as he assisted with the NFL High School Player Development Camp. His teaching position this fall is still being worked out.

NN's Smith announces his gridiron staff

By Charles Alston
Nashville Graphic

RED OAK - It's been a well-guarded secret around Northern Nash's campus all spring. Everyone's been wondering who would be on new head coach Chad Smith's football staff.

At long last, Smith has finally gotten his staff in place for the 2007 football campaign.

Aside from one spot which re-opened just last week, the first-year head coach will have a mixture of old faces and new faces - and some old faces are in new coaching positions.

"This is the best bunch I could have ever assembled," said Smith, who was named in late December to take over the Knights' program after spending the last four years on the sidelines at Rocky Mount. "I've got some really good people helping me this year.

"There were three things that were very important to me in choosing my assistants," Smith said. "They needed to be strong in character, hard-working, with their knowledge of football a distant third. I lucked out to be blessed with getting a group that has it all."

Smith's one vacancy is on offense at the quarterback/running backs coach position. He had that spot filled until that coach decided to take another job. However, he plans to have someone in that position very soon.


Chad Smith: The head coach will coach the offensive line and will be the offensive coordinator. Smith will run a spread offense that is very similar to what Navy runs, but he plans to throw it a bit more. With the development of his depth later, he may dabble with a no-huddle attack.

Rick Ruffin: Ruffin returns and will be the wide receivers coach and will be head coach of the JV squad.

Brian Collis: A recent graduate of East Carolina, Collis will assist with the offensive line and coach the JV offensive line. He is the nephew of new Richmond County head coach Paul Hoggard.
Eddie Harris: Smith says Harris "bleeds Northern Nash green and gold." Harris, a 2000 NN graduate and a non-faculty assistant, will coach the slotbacks.


Scott Henson: In his second year on the staff, the Indiana native will be the defensive coordinator. Smith calls him "a diamond in the rough" and he found him to be pleasant surprise once he arrived to the program.

Dan Richwalski: The current interim NN athletic director (Jim Brett retired at the end of the school year) will rejoin the football staff. He will be the assistant head coach, direct the special teams and assist with the inside linebackers.

Grover Battle: The veteran of the staff will coach the defensive line.

Earl Womack: Also a fixture on the NN sideline for many years, Womack will coach the defensive line.

Corey Mercer: NN's other non-faculty assistant, Mercer will coach the outside linebackers and will be the JV defensive coordinator.

A.B. Whitley: Whitley may be Smith's most talked-about acquisition. Whitley, who helped Raymond Cobb's North Edgecombe squads to two state titles as defensive coordinator and more recently headed Cobb's defense at SouthWest Edgecombe, has joined the Knights' family. Whitley is a late 60s graduate of Northern and he wants to end his coaching career at his alma mater.

Whitley will coach the defensive secondary for the Knights.

"He wanted to come back and be a part of rebuilding the program to where it was," Smith said of Whitley. "I am very glad to have him. I've got some heavy hitters coaching my defense. I've really been blessed to get some real good people to help me."

The turnout at summer workouts have been solid so far, Smith says.

"I've never been prouder to see how these kids are busting their butts to get better," he said.

The Knights will have scrimmages at South Johnston (Aug. 9) and at West Montgomery (Aug. 11) before hosting Wilson Beddingfield in their season's opener on Aug. 17.

Post 58 Update - July 7

(home games in bold, results in red)

June 2 - DH vs. NEW BERN (4-1 W; 5-4 W) 2-0 overall, 0-0 conf.
June 6 - @ Tarboro (20-1 W - 7 inn.) 3-0 overall, 1-0 conf.
June 12 - @ Wilson (17-10 W) 4-0 overall, 2-0 conf.
June 13 - PITT CO. 39 – cancelled
June 14 – TARBORO (17-2 W) 5-0 overall, 3-0 conf.
June 15 - @ Pitt 39 – cancelled.
June 16 - DH - EDENTON (6-2 L, 10-5 L) 5-2 overall, 3-2 conf.
June 17 - @ Kerr Lake (12-6 W) 6-2, 3-2 conf.
June 18 - PITT CO. 160
(11-1 W) 7-2, 3-2 conf.
June 19 - @ Ahoskie (12-1 W) 8-2, 4-2 conf.
June 20 - @ Kinston - PPD., rain
June 21 - @ Washington (9-0 W) 9-2, 5-2 conf.
June 22 – WASHINGTON (16-4 W) 10-2, 6-2 conf.
June 23 - @ Raleigh Post 297 (4-2 L) 10-3, 6-2 conf.
June 24 - AHOSKIE (14-5 W) 11-3, 7-2 conf.
June 26 - RALEIGH POST 297 (10-0 L) 11-4, 7-2 conf.
June 27 - KERR LAKE (12-2 W) 12-4, 7-2 conf.
June 29 - CLAYTON POST 71 – PPD., rain.
June 30 - DH – BENSON (20-3 W; 14-8 W) 14-4. 7-2 conf.
July 3 - PITT CO. POST 39 - cancelled
July 5 – DURHAM (7-6, 10 inn. L) 14-5, 7-2 conf.
July 6 - @ Pitt Co. Post 39 (17-5 W) 15-5, 7-2 conf.
July 8 – DH vs. APEX (8-4 L; 9-8 W) 16-6, 7-2 conf.
July 9 - @ Pitt Co. 160 (South Central HS) - cancelled
July 10 - @ Snow Hill - cancelled
July 11 – WILSON, 7 pm

July 12 - SNOW HILL - cancelled

July 13 - KINSTON - cancelled
July 14 - DH @ DURHAM - cancelled
July 16 – League Playoffs Begin