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Crowe hired to lead Ironmen


Holt High School's David Robinson (4) looks for running room as he is pursued by Bibb County High School Sept. 2, 2011. Kenny Crowe, who coached the defensive linemen as an assistant last season, has been promoted to head football coach at Holt High School. (Photo by Jason Harless)


TUSCALOOSA | Kenny Crowe, who coached the defensive linemen as an assistant last season, has been promoted to head football coach at Holt High School.

The Tuscaloosa County Board of Education approved Crowe’s hiring during its Thursday meeting.

Crowe, 41, has been at Holt for six years. He replaces Tim Gillespie, who headed the program for two seasons. Holt went 2-8 in 2010 and 3-7 last season.

"It is an honor," said Crowe, who has been an offensive and defensive coordinator during his tenure at Holt. "I feel very blessed to be in this situation.

"I definitely think we can have a very successful year, and I definitely want to put my stamp on it."

Crowe graduated Hillcrest in 1989, but he said he’s familiar with the football tradition at Holt. Crowe’s coach at Hillcrest was Skipper Clements, son of the late Woody Clements, who coached at Holt for 40 years. Holt’s stadium is named for Woody Clements.

"I played in the first ever Holt-Hillcrest game," Crowe said. "We’re trying get that old-school mentality restored at Holt. It’s a challenge, but it’s one I’m excited about and one our players are very excited about."

Holt competed in Class 4A last season, but the Ironmen will move into Class 3A this season. Region 3 opponents include American Christian Academy, Fayette County, Gordo, Greene County, Greensboro, Northside and Sipsey Valley. Crowe said he was an offensive lineman at Hillcrest when Chris Hilliker was the quarterback. Hilliker is the first-year head coach at Northside.

Crowe is planning to conduct summer workout sessions with the players, and the Ironmen are scheduled to participate in a seven-on-seven event at Northridge.

"We’re planning on having multiple formations on offense," Crowe said. "Based on the personnel we have, we feel like it would be in our best interest to show a lot of different looks. We’re kind of an in-between team. We’re not overly fast. We’re not very strong. The more sets we can throw at people to try to get them confused, the better off we’re going to be."

Crowe added that he favors a three-man defensive front with four or possibly five linebackers.

Crowe said he hopes the Ironmen can build on the momentum that came from beating Northridge in a spring game.

"We got down early in that game, and the kids continued to fight," Crowe said. "They could have packed up their tents, but I think now they understand that if you put the hard work in and keep fighting good things can happen. We got a good dose of that in the spring. The mentality I have is that our kids are going to fight for four quarters."

Crowe played football and basketball at Hillcrest and threw the shot put and discus in track. He signed a scholarship offer with East Mississippi Community College and earned a degree from the University of Alabama. He started his coaching career at Lloyd Wood Middle School in Northport and later became the head coach.

Holt Principal Neal Guy described Crowe as a "no-nonsense kind of guy."

"He has worked hard, and I believe he is ready to step in and move the program forward," Guy said. "He has the potential to get the best out of our athletes and our students.

"I think he has a pretty strong knowledge of football. He’s worked with several coaches and learned from them. He’s very dedicated to our school and to our students, and I think he’ll do a good job."

 

Reach Andrew Carroll at andrew.carroll@tuscaloosanews.com or at 205-722-0223.