Suwannee looks for coach

Published: Sunday, January 14, 2007 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, January 14, 2007 at 12:00 a.m.

After two seasons of back to back 4-6 records, Suwannee Bulldog football coach Bobby Bennett was asked to step down. The job was posted for internal and external applicants Dec. 19 and will be open until Friday.

"We evaluated the program and felt like we needed to make a change," Suwannee High School principal Dawn Lamb said.

"I just didn't get the job done," Bennett said. "It was their decision. They had high expectations and I wasn't able to meet them."

The procedure that will be used to hire the new coach is unknown at this time. Two years ago, when Bennett was hired to replace Jay Walls (who accepted a job in Georgia), a committee was formed. The nine-person committee voted seven to two for in-house applicant Tommy Chambers. The other two votes were for Bennett. After consideration, Suwannee County superintendent of schools Walter Boatright decided to go with Bennett.

Boatwright has been unavailable for comment on Bennett's firing or on how the new coach will be chosen.

Lamb said she has no idea what the procedure will be, saying it's up to Boatright. Recent coaching hires at Suwannee High have been handled by Lamb, athletic director Randy Ethridge and Boatright. That includes newly hired head baseball coach Vernon Wiggens.

Chambers is the leading candidate for the job. According to Tom Daniels, color announcer for Big 98 football and owner of the Sports Connection, Chambers applied for the job 15 minutes after it was open.

"I don't know if I was the first one to apply," Chambers said. "I will say I applied for the job the first day it was open."

Chambers is thought to be the hands-down favorite for the job.

"Boatright has to know as bad as Chambers wants the job. He's going to give 150 percent," Daniels said. "He is the choice of the coaches and the faculty."

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