Gregory resigns as William Blount football coach
By Grant Ramey | (firstname.lastname@example.org)
David Gregory couldn’t pass up an opportunity to get back home and get back to the coast.
Gregory, less than a month after finishing his fourth season as football coach at William Blount High School, let Governors Athletic Director Mike Brewer know Tuesday morning he was resigning from the position to take an assistant coaching job in his home state of Mississippi.
“It was my decision, there was no pressure whatsoever from the administration or anybody,” Gregory told The Daily Times over the phone. “It’s like I told Coach Brewer, it’s not what I want to do, it’s what I need to do for my family.”
Gregory went 13-27 in four seasons leading the William Blount football program. He’ll continue his duties as head coach of the Govs until Christmas. He’ll then be taking an assistant coaching position at Vancleave High School, a Class 4A school in Vancleave, Miss., roughly 20 miles northwest of Biloxi on the state’s Gulf Coast.
Brewer and Gregory met with the WB football team Tuesday morning to explain what was happening and why.
“It’s an opportunity for him to be close to family,” Brewer said. “When he goes to Mississippi he’s really going home. In either direction, he told me, about an hour either direction will be either his family or his wife’s family.
“Any time you make a transition, it’s a difficult one. He had to put his family first and I respect that and understand that. And that’s sort of where this came from, as far as an opportunity to get home.”
William Blount went 3-7 this season, ending the year with a 25-22 Senior Night win over Farragut on Oct. 26. The Govs finished 4-6 last season, 3-7 in 2010 and 3-7 in 2009 — Gregory’s first season when the coach hired to be the defensive coordinator for Scott Meadows return to the sideline was tapped to take over the team in April of ’09 when Meadows left for the job at Catholic.
“It’s been great (at William Blount),” Gregory said. “Other than wins and losses, I couldn’t have asked for a better four years. The administration has been unbelievable.
“Of course the kids, that’s why I’m in it, for them. If I leave with any regrets it’s that I was not able to see them, or help them, achieve more success. That would be the one regret that I have.”
Gregory said he couldn’t pass up an opportunity to get back to the coast, an opportunity that might not have come up again had he let this one pass by.
“We’d always said that at some point in our life we would go back, whether it be to coach or to retire and going back and living on the coast,” he said. “This opportunity opened up and I didn’t really think I’d get another opportunity.”
Going back home, and getting back to being closer to the water, is the only thing Gregory could’ve left Blount County for, the coach said.
“I love it here ... I wouldn’t have gone back to Mississippi if I couldn’t have gone back to the coast. We would’ve stayed right here.
“You just can’t take the water out of the person. And I’m a water person.”
Gregory will continue to help run the Govs’ winter weightlifting program through Christmas, a mutual decision he reached along with Brewer.
From here, Brewer said he would form a search committee to find the best candidate to replace Gregory.
“I appreciate Coach (Gregory), I appreciate his work ethic, his integrity and his dedication to William Blount High School these past four years,” Brewer said. “I respect him as a coach, I respect him as a person and I truly appreciate his friendship.
“I told him I wish him and his family — he’s a great family man with a great family — all the best in their move.”