Thibodeaux fulfills head coach dream

Published 5:00 am Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Josh Thibodeaux is fulfilling a dream. After three years as anassistant, he is assuming the position of head football coach atLoyd Star.

“I’m real excited about this opportunity,” said Thibodeaux. “Inever would have believed I’d be a head coach at 27, but I’m readyto step up.”

Thibodeaux, a McComb native, is a 1997 graduate of North PikeHigh School. He attended Southwest Mississippi Community Collegefor two years and later graduated from the University of SouthernMississippi with a degree in coaching/sports administration.

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“Josh is hard working young coach and the kids really respecthim,” said Loyd Star principal Wayne Rogers. “They like him andthey’ll play hard for him. Josh is a fine Christian young man, too,and he has a strong bond with the team.”

Thibodeaux replaces Wade Henderson who resigned after one yearat the helm. Henderson was named defensive coordinator at Petalthis spring, serving on the staff of new head coach BubbaDavis.

“We have a real good group of kids at Loyd Star,” saidThibodeaux. “Our coaching staff is great bunch of men to workwith.”

Jonathan Breakfield remains on staff and will work with RandyDelaughter on the offensive side of the football. They plan torevive the Wing-T offense which the Hornets used in 2003 when theyhad a perfect 10-0 regular season.

Rogers will join the team after school each day and work withThibodeaux on the defensive side of the ball.

“The Wing-T fits us real well,” said Thibodeaux. “We should havea good backfield. We plan to throw the ball a lot more than we didtwo years ago.”

The Hornets slumped last season, going 3-7. After winning theirfirst two games under Henderson, injuries and defections began tomount. They finished with 26 players, many of themunderclassmen.

“It was a tough season for us,” Thibodeaux admitted. “In thespring, we wanted to stress the fun aspect of football. We want tobuild interest again.

Thibodeaux said community support for Loyd Star athletics isexceptionally strong. “We have great community support. Anythingyou need or want, they will do their best to help. Everybody isbehind us.”

Forty-five players participated in spring drills. The offseasonweight training and conditioning program has been well received.”We averaged 25-30 (players) a day,” said Thibodeaux. “The attitudeis starting to come back.”

The Hornets lift weights on Monday and Thursday. They run speedand agility drills on Tuesday and Friday.

Loyd Star is a member of Division 6-2A which features severalstrong programs. Hinds AHS, McLaurin, St. Andrew’s and Wesson areannual title contenders. Newcomer Amite County, dropping down fromClass 3A, should be a favorite in the division race.

“Our schedule is strong,” said Thibodeaux, “Hinds AHS has a verytalented quarterback and running back returning.”

The Hornets kick off their season Thursday, Aug. 25, hostingWest Lincoln on William E. “Sambo” Smith Field.

In the classroom, Thibodeaux teaches drug education/safetyeducation and global skills, plus two eighth grade history classes.He is married to the former Desiree Anderson of Columbia. They aremembers of Mt. Zion Baptist Church.