Nick Bryant is coming back to take over the Grundy County football program for a second time.
Bryant, a 2001 Grundy County graduate replaces Tracy Hayworth who was fired last month after posting a 3-27 record in three years at the helm.
The Yellow Jackets finished 2-8 in 2020 as they beat Sequatchie Valley opponents Sequatchie County and Whitwell but despite the record, they made the Class 3A playoffs losing to Red Bank in the first round.
The playoff appearance was the first one for the Yellow Jackets since 2014 which coincidently was the last year that Bryant was the head coach at Grundy County.
“I’m really excited about taking over the program at my alma mater and build a football program that the community can be proud of,” Bryant said.
The last playoff win for Grundy County came back in the 2003 Payoffs as they beat Trousdale County 16-15.
“The football committee has worked diligently going through 36 applications for the head coaching position at GCHS. After narrowing down the applicants and conducting interviews, the football committee unanimously voted for Mr. Nick Bryant. We are confident that Coach Bryant will be successful and will instill pride back to the Grundy County Football program,” Grundy County Director of Schools Donald Durley said.
Bryant, 38, led his alma mater for six seasons (2009-14) and the Yellow Jackets made the 3A playoffs all six seasons as they posted a 31-35 overall record during his tenure.
Before taking over the program in 2009, Bryant was a Yellow Jacket assistant for three seasons and is currently teaching special education at Tracy City Elementary School.
Since his first coaching stint ended, Bryant has not coached at the high school level but has stayed involved coaching at the elementary and middle levels helping coach basketball, baseball and football.
The Yellow Jackets will be a part of a new look five-team region 4-3A as Cannon County, Community, Giles County and Sequatchie County will join Grundy County.
Bryant will be the ninth head coach since 2000 for the Yellow Jackets joining Greg Brewer (2000, 2005-06), Ken Colquette (2001-04), Chris Pickett (2007), Jim Swafford (2008), Bryant (2009-14), Casey Tate (2015-17), Scott Smith (February-July 2017) and Hayworth.
Bryant is one of 16 coaches statewide that is in their second tenure as a head coach at their current school.
The full list is Nick Bryant, Grundy County; Ron Crawford, Brentwood; Joe Gaddis, Oak Ridge; Jeff Harig, Loudon; Will Hester, Ravenwood; Tim James, East Ridge; Shawn Jones, South Greene; Sean Loftis, Jackson County; Matt Lowe, Powell; Mike Martin, Sweetwater; John McNeal, Friendship Christian; Scott Meadows, Pigeon Forge; David O’Connor, Giles County; Ralph Potter, McCallie; Dale Pruitt, Marion County and Shannon Williams, Ooltewah.
Currently nine schools in Brainerd, Cumberland Gap, Hunters Lane, Goodpasture, Jackson Central Merry, John Overton, KIPP Academy, Northwest and South Pittsburg are looking for a head coach.
Baylor LB Commits to ACC School Virginia
*McDonald (6-4, 225) is an outside linebacker who led the Red Raiders defense and has committed to Virginia.
He made 59 total stops and forced five fumbles for Baylor in 2020 and joins fellow Chattanooga talent in Boyd Buchanan tight end Karson Gay as Cavalier commitments.
“Very excited for Trey. It is so rewarding as a coach to see a young man achieve the goal of continuing to play a game he loves. Trey is a great teammate and will be a great fit at UVA. Trey is a very committed and discipline player and I know he’ll continue to work to becoming his very best for Baylor School this coming season,” Red Raider coach Phil Massey said.
McDonald chose Virginia over Dartmouth, Harvard, Navy and Penn and William & Mary.
McDonald joins CPA linebacker Langston Patterson (Vanderbilt), Westview quarterback Ty Simpson (Alabama), East Robertson safety Taylor Groves (Michigan), Lipscomb Academy tight end Sam Roush (Stanford), Germantown athlete Kody Jones (Michigan), Knoxville Catholic quarterback Kaden Martin (Miami FL) and Boyd Buchanan tight end Karson Gay (Virginia) as commitments for the Class of 2022.
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