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Mayflower’s new football coach coming ‘home’

By Tammy Keith

This article was published April 27, 2014 at 12:00 a.m.

MAYFLOWER — Todd Langrell of Damascus isn’t just taking a job as head football and track coach in Mayflower — he’s going home.

“I graduated from Mayflower High School,” Langrell said. “I worked there for nine years, and now I’m coming back.”

Langrell, 42, offensive coordinator for the Greenbrier High School football team and head track coach, was hired

unanimously Monday by the Mayflower School District Board of Education for the head coaching position.

“It’s the place where I wanted to be,” Langrell said. “This is home for me, and it’s very humbling that they would hire me.”

Langrell replaces Jed Davis, who left Class 3A Mayflower to take a job as head football coach at Class 6A Marion.

Langrell said he was in the ninth grade when he moved from Fuller Junior High School in Little Rock to the Mayflower School District.

After graduating from Mayflower High School in 1990, he went to the University of Central Arkansas in Conway and majored in kinesiology and general science.

“I walked onto the basketball team at UCA,” Langrell said, although he didn’t play. “I earned a scholarship to be a student assistant, and I helped with the basketball team with Arch Jones and Coach [Don] Dyer. Coach Dyer knew I wanted to go into the coaching profession. I helped in every way I could.

“That’s how I learned to be a coach, from coach Dyer … and Arch Jones — players loved him,” Langrell said.

Langrell said his first coaching job was in the Mayflower School District.

“I did everything — head seventh-grade girls basketball, head seventh-grade boys basketball, head seventh-grade football, assistant junior high football, assistant junior high boys basketball, assistant high school boys basketball and football. I did a whole bunch of coaching,” he said, laughing.

Langrell was at Mayflower for nine years and left to take a position at Pulaski Oak Grove, where he was head junior high football and basketball coach, as well as assistant high school football coach. He left Oak Grove eight years ago to take a position in Greenbrier, which is Class 5A. He also teaches physical science at Greenbrier Junior High School.

He said he started as a position coach in Greenbrier and became defensive coordinator his second year in the district.

“I’ve been offensive coordinator now for football for the past six years,” he said, serving under Greenbrier head coach Randy Tribble.

“When coach Tribble got the job, he made me the offensive coordinator, and that’s what I actually knew best,” Langrell said. “He is the best head coach that I’ve ever worked for or been around. The people at Greenbrier are very, very fortunate. He’s a class act.”

Mayflower Superintendent John Gray said he recommended Langrell for the job.

In addition to coaching football and track, Gray said, Langrell will be assistant junior high football coach and seventh-grade football coach. His annual salary will be $63,167.

Langrell said he will teach physical education.

“When I got this job and I interviewed, I think this was a selling point of mine. I haven’t taught PE since I left

[Mayflower]. I’ve taught physical science, and I love physical science, but I went to school to be a PE teacher. I want to swing it more to the outdoor-recreation side,” he said.

Gray said he thinks Langrell will be “exciting and motivating for the students and bring a new outlook and allow the program to progress.”

“We’ve had a good coach, and we’ve had a good program,” Gray said.

Langrell said the 3A Mayflower football team has done well offensively.

“I try to keep myself away from what they’ve done in the past and look more to the future,” he said. “The No. 1 goal is to create a family environment, change lives in a positive way. Football’s more than X’s and O’s; it’s more about relationships to me. If I can have an environment of trust, love, the football will be just a bonus.”

Langrell said he wants to create trust among the players and coaches. In the Greenbrier football program, “we believe in each other, and that’s what I want to create here,” he said.

“I want to win games, too, and I want to win a state championship,” he said. “I thought I could do something to give back. I’m not saying I’m perfect, but nobody loves Mayflower more than I do, so I want to help.”

Greenbrier’s record was 4-7 last year, and the team made it to the state playoffs.

“One thing I can say there I contributed to, … I coached two all-conference quarterbacks,” Langrell said. Also, two former Greenbrier quarterbacks, Seth Peters and Neal Burcham, are playing college football.

Langrell said he met with the Mayflower High School football players Tuesday for the first time.

“They worked hard, and I think they’re ready to go,” he said.

Langrell and his wife, Elizabeth, have two sons, Trent, 15, and Tate, 11. He said they will attend the Mayflower School District in the fall.

Other applicants for the Mayflower coaching position were as follows:

• Chad Floyd, assistant football coach at Mayflower. “I think he’s an awesome guy, and I hope he would stay,” Langrell said;

• Chuck Speer of Corning, football coach at Corning and former Conway Christian athletic director and football coach;

• Ryan Wallace of Hot Springs, coach at Lakeside High School;

• Jason Hathcock of Malvern, coach at Bismarck High School;

• Roosevelt Turner Jr. of Augusta, coach at Augusta High School;

• Glover Crittenden, former coach at Hulbert High School in Oklahoma;

• Jimmy Tucker, former coach at Grain Valley High School in Missouri;

• Aaron Thornton of Paragould, coach at Greene County Tech;

• Ronnie McCuin of Connecticut, coach at Rockville High School;

• Danny Adams, former coach at Cleveland High School in Alabama;

• Randy Swain of Oklahoma, coach at Guymon Independent School District;

• Christopher Schleich of Delaware, coach at Appoquinimink High School;

• Chad Mitchell of Bono in Craighead County, coach at Westside High School; and

• Forrest Mazey of Texas, coach at Salado High School.

Senior writer Tammy Keith can be reached at (501) 327-0370 or tkeith@arkansasonline.com.

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