Travis Noland is speaking out on his decision to leave Stephens County High School for the head football job at Oconee County High School.
The Oconee County Board of Education approved Noland’s hire Monday night.
He said leaving Stephens County High School after nine seasons was a difficult decision to make.
“In this business, nine years is a long time at any school,” said Noland. “I feel like we did a lot of good things in those nine years and I hope that as time goes on, people will remember the Noland family in a positive light.”
Noland went 73-30 in his nine years with the Indians, making the playoffs in eight of those seasons and advancing to at least the second round four times.
He said he and his family appreciate all of the support they received during their time at the Reservation.
“I look at (these nine years) as a blessing both to me and my family,” said Noland. “There are so many people you would like to see and shake their hand and thank and as I have told several people I know that I am never able to express the gratitude I had for so many people that I felt in my heart. I am so appreciative of the opportunity of being at Stephens County.”
Noland also has a message for the coaches and former players at Stephens County High School that he worked with.
“I would like to say to all the former players ‘thank you’ for all your hard work and dedication to the program, and (also) to the coaches,” said Noland.
He inherits an Oconee County program that has not finished above .500 since 2004, with its best campaign coming in 2011 when the Warriors went 5-5
Noland said he is looking forward to the challenge in Watkinsville.
“It is one we welcome as a family and look forward to getting to know a new community and school and develop their program, which has struggled in recent years, into a winner,” said Noland.
Noland will see some familiar faces across the sidelines when coaching at OconeeCounty as the Warriors are in the same region with some traditional Stephens County rivals like Hart County and Elbert County.