Camden County promoted offensive coordinator Welton Coffey on Thursday to replace Jeff Herron as head football coach, athletics director Gary Blount confirmed.
Coffey has coached at Camden since 2006 and was part of state championship teams in 2008 and 2009. Coffey came to Georgia in 2003 to be the offensive coordinator at Valdosta under Rick Darlington.
Coffey had been head coach of his alma mater, Raines of Jacksonville, and led that school to a Class 4A championship in Florida in his first season there, 1997. The team improved from 4-7 to 15-0. At Raines, Coffey coached future NFL players Kevin Youngblood, Lito Sheppard, DeJuan Green and Jabar Gaffney.
Coffey will replace one of the state’s most successful coaches in Herron, who took the head coaching job a Class A private school Prince Avenue Christian earlier this month. Herron’s record was 146-18 in his 13 seasons in Kingsland. He won three state titles and 12 region titles, including Region 1-AAAAAA in 2012, when Camden finished 11-2.
‘’We interviewed quite a few candid,ates from both inside and outside the system, and when we looked at who would be the best fit for us and had the character and characteristics for what we were looking for, Coach Coffey was our first choice,” Blount said. “He has a good background, he’s familiar with us and our program and certainly familiar with out region. He coached at Valdosta. He won a state title in Florida, so he certainly has shown he can win a championship.”
Blount said that Camden received interest in the job from about 75-80 coaches, a number htat he thought would have been much larger had the school not stipulated that the job go to someone with prior head coaching experience.
”The job is too big for somebody who’s never sat in that chair,” Blount said.
Coffey was teaching class Thursday afternoon and not immediately available for comment.