Coach Simpson leaving Searcy

Searcy Lions football coach Kenny Simpson, (left) talks to Tate Gibson during the 2020 season. Simpson resigned last week to devote more time to his hobby of working with other football coaches and writing books.

After one season as head football coach at Searcy High School, Kenny Simpson has decided to take a step back from being a head coach.

Simpson, who coached the Lions to a 4-7 record and an appearance in the Class 6A state playoffs, wanted to make more time for his side venture of writing coaching books and mentoring other coaches. Simpson submitted his resignation last week.

“The administration has been very supportive,” Simpson said. “It’s a great place to work. But for the past two years, I’ve been having coaching materials come out and it was kind of a hobby. I don’t golf. I don’t fish. I don’t hunt. So I just study football and produce that stuff. That started taking more and more time as the year went on. Obviously during football season, I’m not doing it. But during this entire offseason, it got bigger. I really started enjoying connecting with other coaches across the country and across the globe.”

Simpson said that his “hobby” could become a full-time job.

“That may be something that ends up happening,” he said. “That’s one of the avenues I’m definitely looking at. In order to kind of pursue that, I don’t really feel like I could have done the job that those kids deserve next season. I didn’t think I was in a place where I could do that.”

Simpson said he’s got a few options he’s looking at, whether it being an assistant coach or just teaching somewhere. He said he does not know yet.

“I’ve never been at a point where I can dictate where I’m going to be,” he said. “We’ll try to figure it out and try to make a decision in the next week or so. I’ve got several opportunities that I’m looking at.”

Simpson has written eight football books.

“I never thought I would have books that people would want to buy and that they would be worldwide,” he said. “My stuff is now in six of seven continents. We don’t count Antarctica. It’s been amazing and humbling.”

Coaches can buy his books or make contact with him at www.fbcoachsimpson.com.

Simpson said he enjoyed his year at Searcy.

“I think they kids did the best that they could … COVID-19 was a tough year for everybody,” he said. “Obviously, it was difficult when we got started so late. To me, Searcy is a great school. I think the teachers are phenomenal. The kids were great in responding. This offseason, I was really enjoying it. But I was torn. For the first time in my life, I felt like I needed to look at another option.”

Searcy Schools superintendent Diane Barrett said the school board meets Wednesday and will make a decision on a search for a new coach. Barrett said that Simpson did a good job as head football coach.

“Coach Simpson is very dedicated to his job,” Barrett said. “He’s got great character and is a great role model for our students. It was a tough year coming in with the pandemic. He gave his energy and dedication to the job, and we appreciate it.”

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