Football: 15 seek North Little Rock coaching job

The North Little Rock School District is hoping the third time's the charm as 15 have applied for the open head football coaching job at the high school. 

The job became open last December when J.R. Eldridge unexpectedly left North Little Rock after just six months at the school to take the coaching job at Farmington High School in northwest Arkansas. Eldridge replaced Jamie Mitchell, who was at North Little Rock for five years.

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In those six years, North Little Rock played for the 7A title five consecutive times, winning once.

The deadline to apply was Tuesday after the job was posted last Friday and this is the third time the district has sought applications and of the 15 current applicants, 13 have previously applied.

The newcomers are Joshua Jones and Richard Strickland. Jones is currently the head coach at Lamar High School and Strickland is a high school coach in Texas.

There’s three current North Little Rock assistant coaches who have again applied for the job and they are: Clint Reed, Blake Pizan and Randy Sandefur. 

Pizan currently serves as offensive coordinator, while Sandefur coaches the defensive line and also serves as head baseball coach.

Pizan was briefly the head coach at Little Rock Central only to return to his previous school in a matter of weeks and has also served as interim head coach.

Maurice Moody and Steven Hampton both dropped out of the running and both had significant head coaching experience. 

Moody is currently the head coach at Jacksonville High School and was previously coach at Little Rock McClellan, where he led the Lions to multiple state title game appearances and Hampton is at Nettleton High School and is a former assistant coach at the University of Central Arkansas. Tyrell Johnson and Bruce Munden were also both applicants in the second round and have dropped out.

The next School Board meeting is scheduled for May 20.

List of applicants

  • Josh Baldwin, Nevada School District

  • Evan Gay, Covenant Christian, Texas

  • Joshua Jones, Lamar High School

  • Brian Maupin, Joe T. Robinson

  • Blake Pizan, North Little Rock School District

  • William Pryor, Oklahoma Marietta H.S., Oklahoma

  • Eric Redmon, Little Rock School District

  • Clint Reed, North Little Rock School District

  • Jeffery Ridgle, North Little Rock School District

  • Randy Sandefur, North Little Rock School District

  • Todd Scott, Dumas School District

  • Charles Smithey, Calallen ISD, Texas

  • Richard Strickland, Paul Pewitt H.S., Omaha, Texas

  • Jamie Washington, Little Rock School District

  • Ron Young, Vilonia School District

Bold indicates new applicant