Capitol High has hired another former quarterback as its head football coach.
Damieon Mills, who played for the Lions from 1991-95, was hired earlier this week as the school began plans for the reformation of its football program.
“I couldn’t turn this job down, and that’s the bottom line,” Mills said. “Capitol is home. The chance to try and help restore the school and the program to what it was when I played is something I take seriously.
“I know it won’t be easy. But I’m excited about being back in Baton Rouge. I’m already working to get in touch with the kids we have enrolled.”
The 34-year-old Mills succeeds another former Capitol quarterback, Chadwick Germany, who was hired as an assistant coach at Southern University earlier this month.
The hiring of Mills was announced during a Wednesday meeting during which the school’s new principal, Onetha Albert, announced the school will go back to its original name, Capitol High, instead of Capitol High Academy and will be one school for boys and girls instead of separate schools.
An enrollment of 160 is projected for the school, which will be run by the state-run Recovery School District. The Lions will again be a Class 2A school and will be part of District 7-2A though its current enrollment is comparable to a 1A school.
Mills spent last season as head coach at Class 1A South Plaquemines. He led the Hurricanes to the Class 1A semifinals and a 10-4 record in the fall and left the school in January.
Mills returned to the Fort Pierce, Fla., area where he previously served as offensive coordinator at Westwood High. He was coordinating youth football camps before being picked for the Capitol job.
Mills played quarterback for longtime Capitol coach Roman Bates and then went on to a California junior college. After taking two years off from school, he spent two seasons as a wide receiver-quarterback at West Virginia Tech.
In 2002, Mills started his coaching career at West Virginia Tech as a wide receivers coach. He was briefly head basketball coach at Buras High in 2005 before Hurricane Katrina.
Mills was out of coaching until the fall of 2006, when he returned to West Virginia Tech as offensive coordinator-associate head coach. He moved to Westwood High in Fort Pierce in 2008.
“This is going to be a challenge,” Mills said. “I’m willing to do whatever I can to make Capitol like it was when coach Bates was here.”
Stewart, who coached Mills in basketball from 1991-95, noted, “We feel good about getting Damieon for this job. He is a connection to this school and the program, which is something we need.”