Four Questions with Sandy Creek coach Chip Walker

GHSF Daily asked Georgia head coaches to answer these four questions. We'll report from a different head coach each day.

Chip Walker, Sandy Creek

1. Who is/was the most influential person in your coaching career? "I've got three that were pretty important. First and foremost was my dad [retired coach Rodney Walker]. The big thing was how he treated his players. He was demanding and hard on us, but all his players knew he was going to do whatever he could to help them. He was a father figure to more than just me. The second one is Dan Pitts. He coached my dad in high school [at Mary Persons] and gave me my first high school job in 1996. He taught work ethic. Nobody was going to outwork coach Pitts. Be good on defense and special teams and don't let your offense beat you early. That's one we've hung our hat on at Sandy Creek. The last one was Tom Bryant, my college coach. The big thing he taught me was confidence. Things aren't always going to go the way you want, but be confident in yourself and the people around you. My oldest son is named after my dad. My youngest son is named after him."

2. Who is the best Georgia player you ever faced? "Eric Berry at Creekside. It was my dad's last year at Sandy Creek in 2004. We were both 9-0. We chased him all over the field, everywhere. Luckily for us, he started on offense and defense. It was an unusually humid game, and by the end, he cramped up and we ended up winning 31-28. But he was the best we ever faced. He was special."

3. What is the best team you ever faced as a coach? "The 2000 Shaw team was really good with coach Charlie Flowers. They were so good on defense and special teams [beat Sandy Creek 7-0 and 8-7 that year]. The 2009 Griffin team we beat in the semifinals was loaded as well. The '13 Griffin team, too. Jaquez Parks refused to let them lose. I played against the '97 Washington County team that had Terrence Edwards and all those guys. We've seen some good ones. It's been fun."

4. If you were Gary Phillips, the new head of the GHSA, what would be the first rule that you would try to change? "Get better control of all the summer rules. Just clarify it. People can take advantage of the vagueness of the rules. What constitutes a legal camp where they can have pads on? I don't like putting kids in pads in summer, even if it's just shoulder pads. Those things turn into full contact. It's one more chance to go out there and have a kid get hurt. It's one more thing during summer that people can take advantage of and sometimes do."

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