McEachern head coach Kyle Hockman (center) takes the field along with the Indians prior to the start of their game against Cedar Grove Friday, Sept. 7, 2018, at McEachern High School in Powder Springs.
Photo: Daniel Varnado/For the AJC
Photo: Daniel Varnado/For the AJC

McEachern football coach resigns to take job in Savannah

Kyle Hockman, whose football teams at McEachern won five region titles in his 11 seasons at the Powder Springs school, is stepping down to become head coach at New Hampstead in Chatham County. 

Hockman’s record at McEachern was 103-32. McEachern reached the state semifinals in 2013, 2014 and 2017. McEachern had 56 former players in college football last fall, the most of any school in Georgia. 

“This is a plan that’s been in motion for a number of years,” Hockman said. “We’ve bought a house on Tybee Island [about five years ago] and have been fixing it up and adding on, and that’s all done, and my kids are all settled. It’s time to move to the beach and live out one of our dreams.” 

Hockman’s son, Bailey, is a quarterback at N.C. State, and his daughter, Savannah, is finishing up at Kennesaw State and will be going to graduate school at Wake Forest. His wife, Cindy, is a nurse set to retire.

New Hampstead, which opened in 2014, finished 5-6 and made its first playoff appearance in 2018 under Michael Moore, who left to become defensive coordinator at Brunswick. 

New Hampstead is a member of five-school Region 2-AAAAA. The school is in Bloomingdale in northwestern Chatham County about 12 miles from downtown Savannah. 

Chatham County public schools aren’t known for their football. Johnson in 2012 became the first Chatham public school to win a state-playoff game since 1969. None has won a state title in the GHSA.

Hockman declined to comment specifically about New Hampstead until his job there is official. He would sign a contract later this week. 

“I don’t have visions of grandeur,” he said. “It’s not like McEachern. Nothing is. But there’s a lot of talent down there, and we’re going to coach our butts off.” 

Hockman, a native of Ohio, came to McEachern from another Cobb County school, Campbell, where he was 9-3 and 6-4 in two seasons, which remain the only back-to-back winning campaigns for that school since 1991-92. He was a head coach at Ryle High in Kentucky for four seasons. Hockman also has coached at the college level at East Carolina State, West Virginia, East Tennessee State and Millersville. 

“Obviously I’ve been humbled and honored to have been at McEachern, one of the premier places in the entire country,” Hockman said. “But it’s not about me. It’s the kids and the community, and they’ll be in great hands. They’ll have a great team. The next three classes are probably as good a three as has been strung together in McEachern history, so they’re going to have some great success.”

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