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BCMS’s Smothers may accept new coaching job

Butler County Magnet School will likely be looking for a new head football coach and athletic director soon. BCMS head coach Shane Smothers has been offered a similar position with Lawrence County High School.

Smothers said he has two weeks to decide if he will take the job or not, a time period in which anything can happen. But he said on Friday he intends to accept the position.

The Lawrence County Board of Education will meet on March 18 to formally approve his hiring.

“I have verbally agreed to become the next head football coach at Lawrence County,” said Smothers. “My family and I have had to sit back and pray about this decision, but Lawrence County has done a heck of a job of showing that they want us. We have negotiated back and forth and everything that I have asked for they’ve agreed to. They’ve showed they’re committed to bringing us there.”

Smothers compiled a 15-18 record at BCMS in three years. His first job as a head coach was at McKenzie in 2001, where he had a 21-3 record in two seasons, then moved on to both W.S. Neal and Walker, before returning to Butler County in 2007.

Smothers said one of the main reasons he returned to the area was because of then-Georgiana principal Joseph Dean.

“He was the No. 1 reason, because we’re so much alike,” said Smothers of Dean. “He thinks like I think…he’s a very good disciplinarian and runs the school from the top to bottom down.”

Smothers said he also relished the challenge of re-building the Georgiana football program, and the new magnet school facility (R.L. Austin Elementary and Georgiana High were consolidated in 2009) was a step forward towards accomplishing that goal.

“This is a tremendous building and it has been an amazing experience to work and teach here,” said Smothers.

Dean was promoted to interim superintendent in September 2009 following the resignation of Mike Looney. Jennifer Burt, from the central office, was then named magnet school principal.

“I don’t fault Mrs. Burt at all because she’s done a terrific job of allowing me to do my job,” said Smothers. “But at the same time we don’t know who the superintendent is going to be, we don’t know if Mr. Dean is coming back here…the instability has made it tough.”

Making the decision easier is that his family lives only 45 minutes away from where he could be coaching, said Smothers.

“My mom and dad never missed a game in Georgiana…they’d drive three-and-a-half hours to be here,” said Smothers.

Smothers played football at Walker County High School and was wide receiver for the University of North Alabama’s national championship teams in 1993 and 1994.

The Moulton Advertiser in Lawrence County reported news of Smothers’ hiring on Thursday. He will replace Dirk Strunk, who resigned.