Jan 8, 2014
Southern Durham High School football coach Adrian Jones has stepped down from his position at the school, one month after winning the first football state championship in school history.
Athletic Director Darius Robinson said Wednesday morning that Jones will become the running backs coach at North Carolina Central University.
"He called me over the break and told me that he had been offered the job," Robinson said. "We definitely didn't want to lose him, and he knew that. I told him it was his decision to make based on what was best for him, and whatever decision he made we were going to support him."
The Spartans return a lot of talent off of last year's state championship squad, and school officials wanted to make sure the program remained stable after Jones' exit.
"Our immediate concern was what had to be done to keep the continuity of the coaching staff and the program together," Robinson said. "In today's world, the last thing we want to do is have our kids confused about where their next steps are going to be."
Robinson said Principal Kenneth Barnes asked if he would be interested in assuming the role as head football coach. Robinson accepted the offer.
"I told him I would make whatever sacrifices necessary," said Robinson.
Robinson has been at Southern Durham for eight years. In that time he has served as an assistant coach under Jones, most recently as the defensive coordinator. He will continue to serve as the athletic director at the school.
"Our foundation that Coach Jones built won't change ... The only thing that is changing is the head coach," said Robinson. "We're still going to do the same things, use the same terminologies, keep the same practice schedule and all."
Robinson said the foundation left by Jones at Southern Durham is a credit to him as a coach.
"My second year here, [Jones] became the head coach. We've always been very talented, we have always had great athletes, and the goal was to get to the level we got to this year," said Robinson. "He identified people who had the same vision he had, which allowed us to win a state championship this year."
Jones played high school football at Southern Durham. After winning the state championship, he often noted how much it meant to him to be the coach who won the first state title in football at his alma mater.
"It is a fairy tale story. If anyone had the passion and had the reason to have the passion it was him," Robinson said.
Southern Durham ended last season with a 14-2 overall record. The team won the Big Eight 3-A Conference title, the 3-AA Eastern Regional title, and the 3-AA state championship.
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