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Alcovy football finds new life under Edgar
Tigers begin 2016 season 3-1
First-year head coach Chris Edgar has coached the Alcovy Tigers to its best season start (3-1) since 2013.

Chris Edgar may be in his first year as head coach of the Alcovy High School football team, but he is no stranger to the game.

Growing up in DeKalb County, Edgar attended Dunwoody High School where he played both football and soccer. After a career-ending knee injury on the soccer field, he went on to attend Auburn University but “remained a fan and student of the game” of football, he said.

Edgar joined both teaching and the football coaching staff at Chamblee Middle School in 1997 before moving up to Chamblee High School and eventually Blessed Trinity. When Alcovy High School opened in 2006, Edgar was invited by then-new head coach Kirk Hoffman to join him.

“Coach Hoffman was a fantastic coach to work under,” Edgar said. “He hired me as his offensive line coach, and he had a wealth of experience that I was just able to learn from him as he was coaching. There are not many people in this world that have a better character than he does.”

Under the guidance of well-respected Coach Hoffman, Edgar got to learn what it takes to run a football team, from managing his staff to handling discipline. When Hoffman stepped down as head coach this past March, it was Edgar who got the nod to take over the program.

Under Edgar the team got a makeover, complete with a new logo, new uniforms and a new attitude.

“I think it’s a perfect storm, to be honest,” he said. “We as a school went through the rebranding process, and we gave them a new logo that they can be proud of and got them some new uniforms so they felt good about going out there on the field. The staff that I put together are tremendous teachers, and they really get the most out of these guys. These guys have a lot of role models that they can look up to.”

The Tigers have bought into the new system brought on by Edgar and his staff, which is evident in their current 3-1 season record — two more wins than they had during the last two seasons combined. Through four games, Alcovy is averaging 250 rushing yards per game under the new run-oriented offense. The Tigers’ sole loss this season came against fellow Newton County school Eastside High School.

Edgar says he has learned a lot in his many years of coaching, bringing those lessons back to Alcovy.

“One thing that I learned from football is that it is the ultimate team game,” he said. “It doesn’t matter how good of a player you are, if you don’t have your teammates to do their job, then it’s not going to matter. So one thing that’s a part of my coaching is that team is important before self. Yes, we’ve got some great players, but they would not be as successful without their teammates.”

Edgar has praised his team for their new mindset and their “refusal to lose” and belief that they can play against any team in the state. What is also unique this year is the team’s special bond.

“I think there is a genuine care about each other,” he said. “They enjoy each other’s company, with all of the teasing, joking and playing and the true friendship that goes with it. They are a band of brothers. They’ve adopted this moniker, the ‘36 Boys.’ It just gives them an identity together, even though they’re coming from all over the county. Our school’s here on 36, and that’s how they identify us. It’s us against the world.”

When asked about his goals as the head coach, Edgar joked that he hopes to be here for another 10 years before retiring and “going out into the sunset.” But his biggest overall goal goes beyond the football field.

“I want to help make guys good citizens, hopefully someday good fathers and hopefully someday good employees or bosses, and the lessons that I learned from football, they can take into life,” he said. “Now, on a side note of that, if we can win a lot of games and these guys have an opportunity to play in college, then that’s great. But I think with ‘PACE’, pride, attitude, character, and effort, then those things will contribute to their success in other areas of life.”