James Clemens, Auburn, Fultondale Among Schools Naming New Coaches

James Clemens has named Chad McGhee as their new head football coach. McGhee has served the last three seasons as the defensive coordinator at Hoover. Before joining the Hoover staff, he spent time as the defensive coordinator at several Georgia programs including North Paulding, North Cobb, Parkview and Grayson. McGhee had worked as head coach at Elkmont in 2005 and 2006,


He replaces Wade Waldrep who left to take the head position at Florence High School. James Clemens, who is coming off an 8-3 campaign in 2020, has posted a 20-1 record in region play, including a pair of region crowns over the last three seasons.


We’re really excited,” McGehee said. “This is an awesome opportunity for us. I’m excited because it’s a good school with good athletics and good academics and a really good community.”


Keith Etheredge has been named the new head football coach at Auburn High School. The highly successful Etheredge leaves Oxford High School after only two seasons. He led the Yellow Jackets to the 2019 6A State Championship and ended with a combined 25-3 mark. Coach Etheredge first

made his mark at his alma mater, Leeds High School. At Leeds, he complied a 107-34 record including a 52-16 mark in region play, six region titles, 10 post season appearances, a pair of undefeated seasons, five trips to the Super 7 and four state championships. He spent 2017 and 2018 at Pell City and 2019 at T.R. Miller, leading all of those teams to 6-5 records.


I think it’s a great place with great leadership,” Etheredge told AL.com. “Dr. (Cristen) Herring (superintendent) is the ultimate professional, and Dr. (Shannon) Pignato (principal) has been really good through this whole process. I think the city and the school system work well together. It’s a situation that will be great for my kids and great for my family. It’s truly one of those dream jobs.”



Kendrick Cook is the new head man at Fultondale. He leaves the Etowah High School program where he was an assistant. A graduate of Mississippi State University where he played tight end for the Bulldogs, he has also served MSU as a graduate assistant before leaving there. Coach Cook has also served as an graduate assistant at West Florida and an assistant at Gadsden City. In 2013 he was head coach at McIntosh High School for one season.


A graduate of Etowah, Cook is excited about the possibilities in Fultondale. "A big thing that I know a lot of people look at in regards of taking a head coaching position is are there athletes, is there room room for improvement or is that program already maxed out as far as potential," he said. "As I began to evaluate – and of course playing against them – you are able to see the talent level, the natural ability these guys have. It was second to none."


Cook was the assistant head coach and coached the offensive line for the Blue Devils in 2020. He joined the staff prior to the 2019 season.