Valdosta to fire Mike O'Brien - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Valdosta to fire Mike O'Brien

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December 11, 2002
by Dave Miller

Valdosta High School football coach Mike O’Brien was told Wednesday by Superintendent Sam Allen that the School Board would not renew his contract for next year. The Board is supposed to vote on the matter on December 17 th.

The notice came as a shock to O’Brien, who posted a 70-20-1 record over seven years. He was promoted from the Offensive Coordinator spot in 1996 when Coach Nick Hyder died suddenly. He has been on the Valdosta staff as head coach or assistant for 24 years.

O’Brien’s teams won three region titles, made a playoff appearance every year except one, and won the AAAA state championship in 1998. Valdosta finished the 2002 season at 8-3-1 overall, for a .708 mark. They were 4-1 in their Sub-Region. The Wildcats were 6-1 in their region last year, finishing a very strong 9-1-0.

Camden County ended Valdosta’s 2002 season with 15-14 overtime win last week. The game ended in a 14-all tie, and Camden was awarded 1 point for penetration according to GHSA rules.

In nine games, it was Camden’s lone victory over Valdosta, which outscored Camden by an aggregate score of 252 to 77.

O’Brien led the Wildcats to the 800th win in school history this season, and ranks third among Valdosta coaches all-time, behind only Wright Bazemore (268-51-7), and Nick Hyder (249-36-2).

Valdosta City school superintendent Sam Allen confirmed he met with O'Brien this morning but would not divulge what was said.

Valdosta Touchdown Club president Ivey Plair, Jr. told Newscenter 10 Sports that he is like everyone else in trying to contact the superintendent to find out what was going on.

Plair says the club has no position on a possible coaching change at Valdosta High.

An earlier report on this web site quoting Valdosta High Touchdown Club board member Kevin Weldon saying the touchdown club supported the firing was not correct.

 

updated at 4:23PM by dave.miller@walb.com

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