PEA RIDGE (KFSM)--Turnover among high school players happens every year. Losing two coordinators before a season is rare. But that's exactly what Pea Ridge dealt with prior to its 2017 season.
Former Blackhawks offensive coordinator Crosby Tuck took the head coaching position at Georgia Christian High School and defensive coordinator Lafe Caton took the same position at Brownsboro High School in Texas.
Head coach Stephen Neal took over the defense. "As a defensive coordinator I've done it for quite a while and yeah it's a little bit busier but of course it's a little bit more fun and you're a little bit more involved with scheme."
Cody Alexander took the offensive coordinator job after coaching the junior high for two seasons.
"I worked with coach Tuck very closely last year, and me and him worked well together and had a lot of the same ideas and philosophies," Alexander said. "Got a bunch of playmakers, we try to spread it out and get it to them and take what the defense is giving us. Some weeks it's Jordan [Witcher] getting it, some weeks it's Hayden [Holtgrewe], some weeks it's Drew [Winn]."
"He likes playmakers, he likes that he can trust us whenever he needs us and can give it to Drew or can throw it up to me or Hayden," senior receiver Witcher said.
Alexander said he's very relaxed and motivational in practices but focused on Friday nights.
"I don't know if this is the right word or not but very cerebral. You don't really know what he's thinking but you know he's always thinking," said Neal.
Alexander went to high school at Gravette and knows the area like the back of his hand.
"There's no doubt that it helps," Neal said. "There's numerous times where I have to come to him about questions about the local coaches or local schools."
Alexander has been at schools that have made two state title games and two semifinals in the past four seasons. That's a lot of success in the 28-year-old's young career.
Cody Alexander Coaching History
|Pea Ridge||Offensive Coordinator||2017|
|Pea Ridge||Head Junior High Coach||2015-16|
|Mena||Head Junior High Coach||2014|
|Berryville||Head Junior High Coach||2011-13|