What brings a coach who was the defensive coordinator at Class 5A Ruston High School to Class 3A Brusly High? Hoff Schooler said it was the proper combination of the time and place to be a head football coach for the first time.
The 42-year-old Schooler was introduced as Brusly’s head football coach on Thursday. He succeeds Marc Brown, who accepted the Livonia head job last month.
"At some point, I think every football coach wants to be a head coach,” Schooler said. “I was looking for the right place and a couple of things factored in. My wife is from the Gulfport (Mississippi) area and this is closer to home for her.
“When I found out about the Brusly job, it intrigued me. And when I researched it, I found out how highly the school is regarded in the Baton Rouge area. And I saw the support the athletes get from the community, the school and the (West Baton Rouge) school system. That did it for me.”
Schooler’s move into a local job came on the same day another coach at a metro area school left his position.
Holden softball David Knight resigned Thursday, just over a month removed from winning a Class B LHSAA title. Knight said he plans to remain at the Livingston Parish school as a teacher, but hopes to return to football coaching. Holden has reportedly hired former Walker High and University of Louisiana at Lafayette player Linzey Cifreo to take over the program.
“I’ve been a football coach most of my career,” Knight said. “When I came here, I had the chance to get something successful going. I feel like I’ve done that. I’d like to get back into coaching football soon, even if it’s as a nonfaculty coach at another school. I’ll see what happens.”
Knight coached the Rockets to a 32-1 record and the Class B title this spring and a Class B runner-up finish in 2016. Four of his freshman players made the LSWA All-State team Thursday, including pitcher Olivia Lackie, the Class B MVP.
Brusly’s Schooler has been at Ruston for 11 years. He started his career as an assistant at Marksville and spent five years at Stone County, Miss. He said he plans to evaluate the program before deciding on offensive/defensive schemes.
“We’ll stress a positive approach and hard work,” Schooler said. “If we do that, success on the field will come.”