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Blanket superintendent disagrees with decision to not renew popular coach's contract

keep coach williamson team photo.JPG

BLANKET, Texas -- Blanket ISD Superintendent David Whisenhunt said he disagrees with the school board's decision to get rid of Athletic Director/Head Football Coach Brent Williamson after just one season.

"Would I have liked to see Brent remain at Blanket ISD? Yes," Whisenhunt said in a statement to KTXS. "Many times life brings unexpected twist and turns our way and we have to deal with them as we are now at Blanket ISD."

Monday night, the school board voted 5-2 not to renew Williamson's contract.

Williamson said he felt blindsided by the decision.

"I know how the business is. As far as the kids, it's unfair to them," Williamson said. "It's unfair to the program, it's unfair to the school."

Williamson said the school board never hinted or approached him beforehand suggesting his contract wouldn't be renewed.

"Some peope are not going to believe in you and tehre's some that do," Williamson said.

School Board President James Heard, Vice President Steve Schulze, Secretary Sherry Gill and board members Vicky Jenkins and Mary Wilson all voted to get rid of Williamson. Beth Bowyer and Chris Furry voted to keep him.

KTXS contacted Heard for comment, but he hung up when we told him who was calling. We immediately called back and left a voicemail.

Three days after the vote, Whisenhunt, who declined speaking to KTXS on-camera, praised the job Williamson is doing.

"I’ve known Brent to be a man of high moral character and integrity," Whisenhunt said. "He was attempting to bring to Blanket ISD athletic programs a strong disciplinary structure, with fairness, student acceptance of their role as it pertains to athletics, holding students to a higher standard and accountability for their actions."

"Although he has only been here a few months I have come to know Brent as one of the hardest working coaches I have ever worked with," said Whisenhunt.

The decision to not renew Williamson came as a shock to some parents and students who started the #KeepCoachWilliamson hashtag on Twitter.

On Tuesday, Lady Tiger Basketball team chanted "We'll scream it, we'll shout it -- Williamson!" as their bus left for a game.


In his only season at Blanket, the Tiger football team went 5-5 in a district with two teams ranked in state -- Zephyr and Jonesboro.

Williamson chose not to comment if he'd stay at Blanket if the board changed its mind. He said he's going to finish out his term, which ends in May, with a positive attitude.


FULL STATEMENT
"Brent Williamson is a good man. I am certain that the Blanket School Community knows how I feel about Brent. I have known Brent almost all his life and one of my sons had the opportunity to play on a state football team with Brent. I’ve known Brent to be a man of high moral character and integrity. He was attempting to bring to Blanket ISD athletic programs a strong disciplinary structure, with fairness, student acceptance of their role as it pertains to Athletics, holding students to a higher standard and accountability for their actions. Brent has been a strong influence to the overall attitude of students. Although he has only been here a few months I have come to know Brent as one of the hardest working coaches I have ever worked with as exampled by his attempts to improve and expand facilities and incorporate new UIL sports into our athletic programs which is providing more opportunities for our students. Would I have liked to see Brent remain at Blanket ISD? YES: Many times life brings unexpected twist and turns our way and we have to deal with them as we are now at Blanket ISD ."

- David Whisenhunt
Superintendent, Blanket ISD


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