The trio is among the new head football coaches in the area entering the 2012 high school football season.
A total of five new coaches enter the Daily Mountain Eagle’s coverage area. Along with Wright, Smothers and Wooten, longtime coordinator Zac Willis takes over at Corner and Wes Tidwell is the new coach at his alma mater Winston County High School.
Wright is hoping his second tenure at Dora is as successful as his first stint at the school. Wright inherits a Dora team that advanced to the second round of the 4A playoffs last season, winning nine games.
Wright won a total of 55 games in his first tenure. His teams won 10 or more games four times during his six year stay (2001-06). He takes over for Dusty Goode who left after going 9-3 at his only year at the school.
At Addison, David Smothers, the brother of Cordova coach Woody Smothers, takes over one of the most successful programs in Class 1A.
The Bulldogs have won 19 games over the last two seasons, but were upset by Berry in the first round of the playoffs last season.
Smothers, an Addison graduate, has 38 players from 10th to 12th grades on his squad, including 14 seniors.
Corner’s Willis takes over a veteran squad as well in his first year as head coach of the Yellow Jackets.
Like Smothers, Willis, is coaching his alma mater. Willis has served as an assistant coach at Corner since 2000, most recently as defensive coordinator.
Corner took a step forward last season, making the playoffs and finishing with the school’s second winning season since 2000.
The Yellow Jackets have 22 seniors on this year’s squad.
Willis takes over for Brent Smith who is now the head coach at Shelby County.
Jarrod Wooten faces a stiff challenge at Parrish. The Tornadoes compete in one of the toughest regions in the state. If that wasn’t enough, Parrish plays just four home games and takes on playoff teams Oakman and Cordova as well as 2A title contender Fultondale in its non-region contests.
Parrish took a step backward last season, going from the state quarterfinals in 2010 to a 4-6 team in 2011. The Tornadoes lost five games by a total of nine points, but have plenty of their skill players back.
Jeff Boren lasted just one year as the Parrish head coach.
At Winston County, Wes Tidwell takes over his alma mater from coach Dan Hogan. The Yellow Jackets are coming off a winless season in 2011.
Winston County looks for a turnaround under Tidwell after winning just three games over the last two seasons.
Lynn’s Philip Smith continues to be the dean of area high school football coaches. Smith is entering his ninth season at his alma mater.
Last year included some memorable moments for Smith, who led Lynn to the No. 1 spot in the Class 1A poll for the first time in school history. Though injuries plagued the team late in the season, the Bears still finished with nine wins and advanced to the second round of the playoffs. Lynn has made the postseason each of the last seven years. Smith is 62-30 at Lynn.
In Walker County, Walker High’s John Holladay is entering his seventh season, giving him the longest tenure. Like Smith, Holladay has put together a foundation of success, guiding Walker to the playoffs each of his six years at the school.
Holladay is 44-15 with Walker.
Here is a look at the area coaches, their overall record and how long they’ve been at their current school.
David Smothers, first year overall, first year at school
Royce Young, 23rd year overall (92-146), third year at school (4-16)
Woody Smothers, second year overall (6-5), second year at school
Zac Willis, first year overall, first year at school
Shay Oliver, fifth year overall (13-28), fifth year at school
Johnny Wright, 25th year overall (163-106), seventh year at school (55-16)
Philip Smith, ninth year overall (62-30), ninth year at school
Lance Archer, third year overall (3-17), third year at school
Mark Hastings, 13th year overall (59-64), fourth year at school (12-20)
Jarrod Wooten, fourth year overall (13-18), first year at school
Greg Patterson, fourth year overall (11-20), fourth year at school
John Holladay, 17th year overall (122-62), sixth year at school (44-15)
Wes Tidwell, first year overall, first year at school