New Bradwell Institute football coach Greg Hill formally was introduced to Tiger Touchdown Club members Thursday at a meet-and-greet hosted by the group in the school’s cafeteria. The gathering originally was scheduled to be held at member George Holtzman’s house, but rain prompted club Vice President Kenneth Howard to move the party indoors.
Touchdown Club President Craig Stafford recognized the board members and honored longtime Tiger supporter Ed Edwards.
Edwards is a former Liberty County School System superintendent, BI principal and teacher, and former president of the Hinesville Lions Club, the main organization responsible for building the original Olvey Field stadium.
Stafford spoke about the legacies of previous Tiger coaches. According to the Georgia High School Football Historians Association, Hokey Jackson was the Tigers’ coach from 1957-69. The following year, former assistant coach Clifford Johnson picked up where Jackson left off and continued as head coach until 1987. Ron Beaucham coached from 1988-90 and was followed by Ross New (1991-93). Jim Walsh took over in 1994 and led the team until 2012. Last year, Adam Carter was hired, but only stayed one season before leaving to coach college.
Stafford said he hopes Hill will stay as long as Jackson, Johnson and Walsh did.
BI Principal Scott Carrier said the school is grateful for the Touchdown Club’s support.
“It has made a tremendous difference in the environment here when you are willing to see a group of people put this kind of time and this kind of effort into helping to develop our football program, which we all know has a bigger impact than just winning games on a Friday night,” he said.
Carrier said having a great football program affects the entire school.
“It allows us to develop a stronger academic program, which, of course, is what we are all about,” he said. “Students become more dedicated about their learning and they take greater pride in their school, and all of that leads to what we really want, which is to graduate students who are truly ready to go out and enter the work force or go to college or join the Army and be successful citizens.”
Stafford introduced Hill.
“What a great honor it is to be here and to have the opportunity to take over a program that is so rich in tradition in football,” Hill said. “Back in the early 2000s when I was coaching at Statesboro, we used to scrimmage Bradwell, and I always thought to myself, ‘There are some athletes there,” and there was something that just had to be done. … Who would have thought that I would be in the position to get those things done?”
According to the GHSFHA, the Tigers hold an overall record of 440-252-11 and one state title earned in 1965. Bradwell has 10 region titles.