Rabun’s Jaybo Shaw, replacing his father, among 13 new coaches in AA

JAYBO SHAW (left, with father/coach Lee) quarterbacked for Flowery Branch before taking the same role at Tech.
JAYBO SHAW (left, with father/coach Lee) quarterbacked for Flowery Branch before taking the same role at Tech.

Credit: Kimberly Smith / AJC File

Credit: Kimberly Smith / AJC File

Number of hires: 13

Best hire: Dale Pruitt, Dade County

Hardest to replace: Lee Shaw, Rabun County

Best job: Elbert County

Toughest job: Josey

Most interesting: Dale Pruitt, the father of Tennessee head coach Jeremy Pruitt, is now in Georgia as the head coach at Dade County in the state's northwest corner. Dale Pruitt has a record of 289-138 in 38 seasons as a head coach, 36 of those in his native Alabama. Pruitt coached most recently at Albertville, a school about 60 miles southwest of Dade County, and led that program to three playoff appearances in four seasons. Pruitt is best known for two stints at Plainview, his alma mater. Plainview won 10 area titles and made two appearances in Class 3A championship games under Pruitt, and son Jeremy was the quarterback and an all-state defensive back on Plainview's 1991 state runner-up before moving on to play at Middle Tennessee and Alabama.

Region 1 


Region 2 

*Bacon County hired Houston County offensive coordinator Keith Gosse to replace Kyle Langford, who is now on Lowndes’ staff. Gosse ran the offenses for Houston County during Jake Fromm's final three seasons. He was 18-15 in three seasons as head coach at McIntosh County Academy. Gosse has been on staffs at Brantley County, Appling County, Metter and Tift County. Bacon County was 10-19 in three seasons under Langford.

Region 3 

*Dodge County hired Wilcox County head coach Ken Cofer to replace Rex Hodges, who is now the Dodge County Schools superintendent. Cofer was on Dodge County's staff in 2016 and 2017. He was head coach at Bacon County (11-10 record in 2014-15) and Cook (32-15 in 2010-13). His Wilcox team was 5-6 last season. Hodges was 60-31 at Dodge and won region titles in 2015 and 2017.

Region 4 

*Josey hired John Starr II to replace Marcus Jackson, who remained as athletic director. Starr is the son of John Starr Sr., who led Josey to its lone state title in 1995. Starr II played at Chattooga under his father and then at Wofford College. He coached at Salem from 2010 to 2015, three seasons as offensive coordinator, two as defensive coordinator, but hadn't coached football since. He was encouraged to apply for the Josey job by alumni, including former NFL player Deion Grant, a member of the '95 team. Josey was 0-10 in Jackson's only season.

*Laney hired Denham Springs (La.) defensive coordinator Rashad Dunn to replace Rodney McFadden, who is now on staff at Washington-Wilkes. Dunn played high school ball at nearby Greenbrier, then played at Iowa. He had been the defensive coordinator at Saint Stanislaus Boys College in Louisiana before moving to Denham Springs in 2017 with the head coach, Bill Conides. Laney was 20-22 in four seasons under McFadden, including a 4-6 finish in 2018.

*Westside of Augusta hired alumnus and former Aquinas assistant Jon Wiley to replace Scott Tate, who is now defensive coordinator at Butler. Wiley was Aquinas' defensive coordinator in 2015 and was out of football the past two years. He was a linebacker on Valdosta State's 2012 Division II national championship team.

Region 5 

*Lamar County promoted defensive coordinator Jeffrey Sloan to replace John Flath, who is now on Lee County's staff. Sloan had been Lamar County's assistant head coach and defensive coordinator since 2014 except for a season spent on Jones County's staff in 2016. Sloan also has assisted at his alma mater, Paulding County, and South Paulding. Lamar County was 5-15 in two seasons under Flath.

*Spencer hired its athletic director, Robert Sanders, to replace Justin Newman, who is now offensive coordinator at Rutland. Sanders, a Pacelli graduate, has coached in Columbus, primarily at Spencer, since 1990. He is the son of the late Pete Sanders, the first head coach and athletic director at Carver in Columbus from 1961 to 1975. Spencer was 3-8 in Newman's only season.

Region 6 

*McNair hired Discovery assistant head coach and offensive coordinator Johnny Burdette to replace Shelton Carleton, who is now Grayson's wide receivers coach. Burdette, a running back on McNair's 1991 region-championship team, has been on staffs at Discovery (2016-18), Newton (2015), Berkmar (2009-14) and Towers (2007-08). McNair was 3-7 each of the past three seasons.

Region 7 

*Dade County hired Albertville (Ala.) head coach Dale Pruitt to replace Bradley Warren, who took the head coaching job at McIntosh County Academy. Pruitt has a record of 289-138 in 38 seasons as a head coach, 36 of those in his native Alabama. Warren's teams were 47-67 in 11 seasons, 1-9 in 2018.

*Gordon Central promoted strength-and-conditioning coach T.J. Hamilton to replace Corey Nix, who is now defensive coordinator at Villa Rica. Hamilton, a former Gordon Central and Tennessee-Martin running back, also has coached at Johnson and North Hall in Hall County and White County Middle School. Gordon Lee was 5-15 in two seasons under Nix.

*Model hired Cartersville linebackers coach Jeff Hunnicutt to replace Ricky Ross, who was 2-8 in one season and chose not to return. Hunnicutt served just one year at Cartersville after stints as defensive coordinator at Coosa and Pepperell. He's the son of Lynn Hunnicutt, a longtime head coach in northwest Georgia who won a state title at Pepperell in 1990 and finished his career at Model in 2011.

Region 8 

*Elbert County hired Trousdale County (Tenn.) head coach Brad Waggoner to replace Sid Fritts, who retired. Waggoner in 2018 led Trousdale County of Hartsville, Tenn., to the Tennessee Class 2A championship game. His two-season record there was 19-8. From 2014 to 2017, he was the associate director of player personnel and offensive analyst for Georgia Tech under Paul Johnson. Waggoner has been a head coach in Georgia at Chattooga, Decatur and Lumpkin County. He has coached at several colleges, including Alabama as a graduate assistant.

*Rabun County promoted offensive coordinator Jaybo Shaw to replace his father, Lee Shaw, who retired. Shaw was an all-state quarterback at Flowey Branch, coached by his father, before signing with Georgia Tech and finishing his college career at Georgia Southern. He has been Rabun County's offensive coordinator the past three seasons. Lee Shaw was 70-17 with five region titles in seven seasons at Rabun County, his alma mater.

Coming Friday: Class A

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