Camden County football coach Sphire returns to Kentucky

Credit: Jason Getz

Credit: Jason Getz

Camden County football coach Bob Sphire, who came to Georgia in 2006 and built North Gwinnett into a state power before taking the Camden job in 2017, is returning to his native Kentucky.

Highlands High of Fort Thomas, Ky., announced Thursday that it had hired Sphire. Fort Thomas is a suburb of Cincinnati, and Highlands is a Class 5A school whose football team finished 5-6 last season.

“Growing up in Kentucky and coaching in this state for as long as I did, I know firsthand that Highlands is one of the best schools, academically and athletically, in the Commonwealth,’' Sphire said in a news release from Highlands’ school district. “Its tradition of excellence speaks for itself. The football program is built around champions and championships. And I can’t wait to work with the tremendous young men in the program.”

Sphire first made his name at Lexington Catholic, compiling a 140-39 record and winning a state title in 2005.

When Sphire came to North Gwinnett, the Bulldogs had only two playoff victories in its history. Under Sphire, North Gwinnett averaged 10 wins and won five region titles in 11 seasons with fast-paced spread offenses producing four first-team all-state quarterbacks. North was the 2013 Class 6A runner-up to Norcross in 2013.

Sphire was less successful at Camden, a former state power that had gone 2-7 the season before Sphire’s arrival. His four teams were 23-20 overall, 5-6 in 2020.