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W. Lincoln welcomes Brumfield to school

Willie Brumfield received an enthusiastic welcome Tuesday toWest Lincoln. It was the first opportunity for Brumfield to meetwith football players and students at the school.

Brumfield, 33, was named West Lincoln’s new head football coachlast week during a meeting of the Lincoln County school board. Hereplaces Roe Burns who resigned after one year at West Lincoln’shelm. Burns, a 30-year coaching veteran had spent the previous 20years as head coach at Loyd Star before deciding to retire for oneyear.

“There’s a lot of enthusiasm at West Lincoln,” said Brumfield.”The kids are excited about playing football. There’s a lot ofcommunity interest in the program.”

West Lincoln’s football program is four years old. The Bearsbegan playing varsity football the first year instead of startingat the junior high level and working up. They have enjoyed only twovictories against a varsity opponent during that span, beatingMadison St. Joseph in the 2000 season and Clarkdale in 1999.

The Bears were winless in 11 games last year. They are Region4-1A members. Other region foes are Enterprise, Bogue Chitto,Natchez Cathedral, Salem, Dexter, St. Aloysius, Stringer, Mt. Oliveand Mize, the 2000 state champion and 2001 quarterfinalist.

“Our schedule is tough,” said Brumfield. “You have to work hardand be ready play hard every Friday night. Mize is always there inthe state playoffs. Mt. Olive and Stringer are rebuilding.Enterprise and Bogue Chitto are tough. So are Cathedral and St. Al,not to mention Dexter and Salem.”

Brumfield, a Walthall County native, is a 1986 graduate ofSalem. For the past three years he has served as defensivecoordinator at Petal, a Class 5A school.

Petal is under the direction of Lonny Schraeder, who was in hisfirst year at the controls in 2001. Schraeder had served 15 yearsas an assistant at Petal.

Brumfield said he would coach the offense at West Lincoln and4-year assistant coach Luke Addison would coach the defense. Springpractice begins April 29 and will be climaxed with the Loyd Starjamboree May 17.

“Around 55 players in grades nine through 12 showed interest inspring practice,” said Brumfield. “They’re might be five or 10more. I’m pleasantly surprised.”

Brumfield is the fourth head coach in four years at WestLincoln. Preston Gordon was coach for the first two years. DonHolston coached one season and Burns coached last season.

“I want to build the program,” said Brumfield. “I want to make acommitment to making West Lincoln football a success.”

West Lincoln lost seven seniors off of last year’s team.Fullback Stacy Fells, a 1,000-yard rusher, returns for his seniorcampaign.