POPLARVILLE - A former Pearl River Community College assistant coach is coming back to lead the Wildcat football program.
William Jones, 45, a native of Hot Springs, Ark. and assistant coach at PRCC from 2001-07, is the new head football coach at Pearl River Community College, pending approval by the PRCC Board of Trustees at its Dec. 13 meeting.
"We feel very fortunate to be able to recommend Coach William Jones as the next head football coach at Pearl River Community College," said PRCC President William Lewis. "Coach Jones is passionate about his profession and has a deep sense of commitment to the success of his players on and off the field. He has a proven track record of success on the field, but he also has the same record of success with developing his players for success after football. Coach Jones is a great fit for our program. "
Jones comes to PRCC from East Mississippi Community College, where he has served as associate head coach and defensive coordinator under head coach Buddy Stephens. He also served as assistant athletic director.
He helped guide East Mississippi to a five-year record of 44-10, including the school's first NJCAA national championship, two MACJC state championships and four MACJC North Division regular-season crowns.
"This is the biggest moment in my professional career, being named head coach at Pearl River Community College," said Jones. "I am very excited about the opportunity to lead a program that has won a national championship and you have the ability to win a national championship here.
"There is work to be done in terms of hiring coaches, evaluating current personnel, looking at the facilities and getting everything in place."
He replaces Coach Tim Hatten, who resigned his position as head football coach last month.
After having spent 12 years as a defensive coordinator in the Mississippi junior college league, Jones knows he has his work cut out for him.
"It always starts with having good people, a good administration, good community support, and good players," said Jones. "You have to build those relationships that help you find those good players. It all starts with caliber of football player and the kind of person you want in this program. I have to set the bar for that."
Jones also knows that his first game as the PRCC head coach next season will be at home against East Mississippi.
"There will be some excitement about that," he said.
At PRCC, Jones served as defensive coordinator and linebackers coach. During that time, the Wildcats posted a composite record of 60-12 (.833), including an NJCAA National Championship in 2004 and four consecutive MACJC state titles (2003-06).
PRCC consistently ranked among the national team defensive leaders during Jones' tenure, and 10 Wildcat players collected NJCAA All-American accolades during his seven-year stay at the school, including 2003 NJCAA Male Athlete of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year Larry Kendrick.
Upon earning his bachelor's degree in life sciences (pre-veterinary medicine) from Louisiana Tech University in 1990, Jones served as vice president of scouting operations and personnel development for the Sportstek Management Group in Shreveport, La. He later earned a master's degree in higher education administration, with a concentration in sports administration, from the University of Louisville in 1999.
Jones' debut in collegiate coaching came at Grambling State University, where he served as a defensive assistant coach under the guidance of legendary Hall of Fame coach Eddie Robinson. During his time at Grambling, the 1994 Tigers claimed the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) championship and played in the inaugural Heritage Bowl.While Jones has divided his football coaching career between the community college and NCAA Division II ranks, he also has extensive experience at the professional level.
Before switching to the community college coaching ranks in 2001, Jones spent six seasons at the NCAA Division II level at Kentucky State University, where he served as co-defensive coordinator and recruiting coordinator before getting the call from Pearl River.
- (PHOTOS) Newton County Class 4A State Championship Slideshow from games one and two of the MHSAA Class 4A State Championship.
Not done yet
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Bulldogs win again, beat S. Carolina in SEC Tournament
Demarcus Henderson and Wes Rea both had RBI singles in the ninth inning to lift Mississippi State to a 5-3 win over South Carolina Wednesday night in the second round of the Southeastern Conference tournament.
The Bulldogs (42-16) loaded the bases with one out before Henderson and Rea drove in runs on consecutive at-bats for the second time in the game.
Mississippi State had beaten Missouri 2-1 in 17 innings Tuesday night, matching the longest game in SEC tournament history.
Reliever Myles Gentry (4-0) limited the Gamecocks (39-17) to a one-out single in the bottom of the ninth.
Gentry pitched 5-2/3 scoreless innings, allowing three hits while striking out eight.
Rea was 3 for 4 while Henderson drove in three runs.
Mississippi State led 3-0 before South Carolina tied it up in the fourth.
Max Schrock drew a bases loaded walk and Brison Celek followed with a two-run single.
Hogs top Ole Miss in SEC Tournament
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