After spending the last two years as defensive coordinator at Ragland High School, Derrick Sewell is now the Purple Devils’ new head football coach. The move came after former head football coach Brian Alred decided to go back home to Glencoe.
This is the first time Sewell has been a head football coach, and he said he’s thankful.
“First of all, I am thankful to God that He decided a long time ago that this was His plan for me,” Sewell said. “I am very thankful to my wife and family for allowing me to pursue this dream. I am thankful to my principal, Jennifer Ball, the committee, Superintendent Jenny Seals and all the members of the Board of Education. It means a lot. I love these kids. They know me, I know them. I’m just very thankful for the opportunity.”
Sewell, 31, attended Sylvania High School through halfway of his junior year where he played football, basketball and baseball. He transferred to Ft. Payne High School where he graduated in 2005. He received a football scholarship to Kentucky Wesleyan, a Division II college, where he was a receiver.
“It has been during the past four years or so that I have spent a lot of time on the defensive side of the football,” he said. “I do have a knowledge on the offensive side of the football and know what I want to do.”
After being around the Ragland kids the past two years, Sewell was asked what he expected out of them as they prepare for spring football in a couple of months.
“I know I am going to get everything they have,” he said. “That will be the standard. We talked in a meeting the next day after I was hired about setting a standard. We have a high standard with high, lofty goals. We will work to get to them. Ragland is accustomed to winning football games. What we want to make sure we do is get to that place where we are winning championships – ultimately. They can’t see that as some far-off dream. They’ve got to understand this is something we can do, and that will set the tone for the way we work.”
Sewell and his wife, Hollie, just celebrated their two-year wedding anniversary on Jan. 7. They have two boys. They reside in Southside.
Reach Gary Hanner at firstname.lastname@example.org