Dalton High promotes longtime ‘community coach’ to head football coach

Dalton High School’s new football coach is more than just one of the town’s top financial planners.

Matt Land, 40, has strong connections to Dalton’s football program. He is a former player at the school, and has spent the last 17 years as an assistant on the football staff at his alma mater. Land was a “community coach,” while also working in private business.

“The reason we hired (Land) was because of his integrity and class,” Dalton athletics director Ronnie McClurg told the AJC. “That is kind of what Dalton High School has built its history on, and Matt certainly (represents) that.”

Land will replace Adam Winegarden, who resigned in February “under pressure from boosters after his name became public as a finalist for the head coach’s job at Perry High School,” according to the Dalton Daily Citizen.

Back to Land: McClurg said — with Land’s hiring — the rest of Dalton’s coaching staff will not change. Beginning next year, Land will become a full-time staff member at Dalton High School, teaching math classes. He holds a degree in aerospace engineering from Auburn University, and will take classes to acquire permanent teacher certification.

McClurg said his new coach will likely remain a part-owner of a financial group, but no longer be heavily involved in the day-to-day activities of it. “I don’t think that would be possible,” McClurg said. “Teaching and coaching football is a full-time job, sometimes a ‘double’ full-time job and there’s just not enough hours in the day.”

Dalton has one of the nation’s most prestigious football programs with 50 consecutive winning seasons in a row.

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6 comments Add your comment

Mikey Falluer

April 15th, 2010
10:42 am

You don’t THINK it will be possible to run a business and be a Head Coach Ronnie? It ain’t possilble, and it’s a good thing you’re playing little sisters of the poor in region the next two years.

rocky redwood

April 16th, 2010
10:51 am

Of course he can still run his business. That way McClurg and the QB club can continue to run the football team.


April 16th, 2010
2:01 pm

I thought it was illegal for a lay coach/community coach to be the head coach of any high school team? Has this rule changed?

Todd Holcomb

April 16th, 2010
4:25 pm

”I thought it was illegal for a lay coach/community coach to be the head coach of any high school team? Has this rule changed?”

No, same rules. Land no longer will be a community coach. He will teach math.


April 16th, 2010
6:06 pm

The reason Dalton hasn’t had losing season in 50 years is because whitfield county football sucks! Northwest Whitfield, Southeast Whitfield and Dalton suck. Besides calhoun nobody in that area has quality football. Dalton has always been able to get the best players in the region and leave all the other schools worse off.


April 17th, 2010
8:59 pm

It’s been easy having 50 years of winning tradition. If you don’t have the players then go out and recruit them in. The QB club can always find a place for the parents to work.