Thursday, April 8, 2010

New Braden River football coach arrives

New Braden River head football coach Don Purvis made it into town over the Easter Weekend and met with his players for the first time on Monday.

About 60 to 70 players showed up to greet the new coach and he said their enthusiasm and eagerness to get down to work touched him.

Purvis is the Pirates third coach in less than two years following the resignation of Ed Volz, who had the position for less than a year after replacing Josh Hunter. Braden River’s first coach, Hunter resigned following his involvement as a driver in a fatal accident.

“I know it’s hard to trust a new guy, especially after everything they’ve been through, but I wanted them to know I am putting my money where my mouth is and I am here to stay,” Purvis said. “Basically my message to the team was I left a very, very good job and I gave it up to take this job here because I felt this is where I am led to be. I wanted to the kids to know that I am taking the first step.”

Apparently the initial meeting was one of mutual respect. Purvis said he was impressed with the attitude of the players and their commitment.

“You could tell they were eager to get started, which I can understand because they’ve been sailing without a rudder for awhile,” Purvis said. “A player said he was praying for me to be here. I felt like it was answer to a prayer, which meant a lot to me because I am really taking this whole thing on faith.”

Purvis comes from First Assembly Christian School just outside of Memphis where he was head football coach for the past three years. He was an assistant coach at Bayshore for one season in 2003.

One of Purvis’ new staff members will be Bayshore graduate Pat Calvary, who played collegiately at Liberty University. He will coach the Pirates defensive backs.

Coming from Tennessee with Purvis is Clayton Dowdy, who will be his defensive coordinator. The coach said a lot of the current staff already at Braden River will remain.

Purvis will also be the Pirates offensive coordinator. He is not sure what type of offense he will implement, but said he prefers the double wing.

“I would like to establish that as our offense and build on it year in and year out, but it depends on our personnel,” Purvis said. “I think there is a blue collar mentality here. These kids work their tails off and are very physical and very disciplined. I think when you get guys like that it’s easy to line up and get into that style of offense (grind it out on the ground).”

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