New Football Coach Enters Titan Territory

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New Football Coach Enters Titan Territory

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Dominion High School made a key decision on December 11th, as they hired Drake Woodard to be the head coach of their football team, replacing Karl Buckwalter, who resigned on November 6, after 11 years.

In a move announced in front of numerous potential players, including Trey Hayes and Jimmy Christ, Woodard was introduced to the team by Athletic Director Dwayne Peters and Dr. Brewer.

The 28-year-old may be young, but he boasts an impressive resume. Woodard grew up in upstate New York and went to play college football at Hobart, where he was a cornerback, a two-time All-Liberty League first team player, graduating in 2011.

From there, he went to Shenandoah University, where he started from defensive backs coach to passing game coordinator before moving to Rock Ridge High School to be their defensive coordinator in 2018, his last position before accepting the head coaching job at Dominion.

“My wife and I have a son, so college is very hard with the recruiting and not being home,” Woodard said. “In high school, I can still be home but I can still have the fruits of coaching and the Xs and Os.”

On both offense and defense, Woodward said he wants to avoid giving specifics until learning more about his personnel but did say that he wanted to incorporate certain plays into the playbook.

“I love RPOs, love being able to put defensive players and coordinators in binds where you’re playing chess so they don’t know what the next step is. They don’t know what formation is more predicated in runs and what’s predicated in pass,” Woodard said. “Offensively, we will be efficient, we will take care of the ball, but we will attack in certain spots with different elements of our game.”

According to Peters, there were 21 applicants for the job, a list that was narrowed down to four candidates that were brought in for interviews, from which Woodward was selected by a committee including Brewer, Peters, two players, and two parents.

“He’s got enthusiasm about the game, he’s passionate. He’s bringing some new, fresh ideas into the mix. He has some high school and college experience,” Peters said. “He blew us away with his answers.”

As far as the relationship between Woodard and Dominion’s players, the early returns look promising.

“Trey Hayes has stood out to me. Jimmy Christ, looking at him physically, he stands out to me. On film, he moves better than any 6’7” guy could. He’s 6’7” and athletic, he looks like he can put muscles in spots that he hasn’t even tapped yet,” Woodard said.

That respect and admiration was mutual, as Christ was similarly enthusiastic about his new head coach. “I really like him. He is very sharp and has a lot of energy,” Christ said.

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