By Gene Phelps/NEMS Daily Journal
Darryl Carter wasn’t looking to leave his job as football coach at Kemper County … until he got a call from Shannon.
The opportunity to become the Red Raiders’ new coach was too good to turn down.
“I jumped on it,” said Carter, whose hiring was approved Tuesday by the Lee County school board. “I hated to leave Kemper County, but I had to look at the big picture. This was an opportunity to come home, do bigger things, play 4A football.”
Carter, a Laurel native, was an assistant coach for Tupelo High (2004-08) before taking the Kemper County job, where his teams compiled a 23-13 record and reached the 3A playoffs three consecutive seasons.
While coaching in Tupelo, the former Clarion-Ledger Dandy Dozen quarterback from Northeast Jones, played indoor football for the Tupelo FireAnts and Mississippi MudCats.
Carter signed to play football for Southern Mississippi out of high school, but transferred to Louisiana-Monroe, where he played receiver.
He brings a multiple offensive philosophy to Shannon.
“We’ll spread it out and get you in there tight some,” he said. “When I say spread, that doesn’t mean we’re going to throw 40 times a game. We’re going to mix the run and pass, maybe throw a little arena ball in with our passing offense.”
Ready to hit
Defensively, Carter believes his new team has the speed to be effective.
“We may not be as big as some 4A schools, but we’ll be a ‘hit-them-from-every-direction,’ checking-style defense,” he said.
Carter will rely a lot on his assistants for input in all areas.
“I’ve got some good coaches,” he said. “They know these players. I want to ease my way into it. I don’t won’t to shock them.”
Shannon’s Division 1-4A foes remain the same for 2012 – Amory, Corinth, Itawamba AHS, Pontotoc and Tishomingo County. The Raiders will play a non-league schedule that features 6A Tupelo, defending 4A state champion Lafayette and 3A power Aberdeen.
“Our tough non-division schedule will get us ready for division play,” Carter said.
Carter accepted the job after Shannon alum Danny Clark, who was named coach April 12, withdrew from the position.