ROLLING FORK — Anthony White has never had a chance to be a head football coach.
Now he’ll get a shot — at least for one season.
White, who spent the last couple years as South Delta High’s assistant offensive coach, has been named the team’s interim head coach for this upcoming season.
Last year’s head coach Derrick Hooker is scheduled to return next season after taking a sabbatical leave to earn an administrative degree at Delta State, said Superintendent Katherine Jackson.
“I’m excited to be here,” said White, who played a vital role in cooking up last year’s offensive scheme which guided the Bulldogs to a 8-4 record before losing to Belmont in the first round of the playoffs. “We want to win, it’s as simple as that.”
This may be White’s first time in the driver position, but he knows what he wants out of his team.
“We have three main priorities, said White. “No. 1, we want character building: each player must improve as a person. No. 2, we want academic excellence. We won’t settle for average. And No. 3, is football. We want to win ballgames.”
The team recently started practice with a seemingly record crowd of players: 45, White said.
And of the 45, there’s two players South Delta will be depending heavily on — sophomore quarterback Ricky Green and senior running back Reginald Brown.
Green had his best game of the season in last year’s playoff matchup against Belmont, where he throw for 170 yards and two touchdowns. And Brown is coming off a season where he nearly ran for 1,000 yards.
“We expect a lot out of Ricky,” said the interim head coach. “He’s matured over the offseason and we expect him to contribute throwing and running the ball.
“(Brown’s) attitude has improved tremendously. He’s more disciple and focused.”
South Delta is scheduled to open their season for the second straight year at McClain High on Aug. 20. They won last year’s game 8-6. They’ll then head down to take on Simmons High on Aug. 27.
As for how White think he will do as interim head coach?
“I’m just taking it day by day,” he said.
ONLY ONLINE: South Delta is also searching for a head boy's basketball coach. A current staff member will soon be named to take over the position, said Superintendent Kathernine Jackson, due to the rough economic times.