Back to the land of the Rams
Gann, a native of Okolona, coached football at Vardaman High School early in his career and has a return trip to the sideline for the 2012-13 season, pending approval from the Calhoun County school board.
Gann began his career in 1974 at Chickasaw Academy where he said he gained a lot of education in coaching from hands-on experience.
“We didn’t know we didn’t know anything,” Gann laughed.
He had a stint at Okolona High School as assistant football coach and baseball coach before being tapped by Vardaman.
“They brought me over with all my five years experience,” he smiled. “Mr. (Porter) Casey played for me and his daddy (James Casey) was my assistant. Some of the most exciting games I’ve had were here and some of the most gut-wrenching, can’t get over it games, too.”
Gann referenced the 19-18 playoff loss the Rams took to rival Smithville during his former tenure.
“I can still see it clear as day,” Gann said.
During his absence from the local area, Gann taught and coached at Clinton, Baldwyn, Horn Lake and Center Hill and had several positions in administration, but his love of the game was one of the main reasons he came back to the sideline.
“I missed coaching,” said Gann who stayed involved with sports through his membership on the Mississippi Association of Coaches board. “Even when I was an assistant principal, my title never changed from Coach to Mister.”
Gann will teach Physical Education and athletics in addition to leading the Rams on the gridiron and is excited about the challenge.
“I’m really fired up about it,” Gann said. “I have the opportunity to come back and it’s really hard to put it into words.”
Principal Casey recommended Gann as a replacement for Justin Hollis who moved back to his native Union County this summer.
“There are three things on my list of things to look for in a coach,” Casey said. “First and foremost is discipline, then pride in taking care of the facilites and to be responsible financially. Coach Gann has a proven track record. I worked for and played for him and all three of those areas are strengths for him.”
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About Lisa Voyles
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