South Pointe’s head coach for varsity football, Strait Herron, has been the fastest coach to get 100 wins all in a matter of eight seasons. He was recognized and awarded on Friday, Oct. 20, after his team defeated the Ridgeview Blazers.
Herron is well-known around S.C. because of his team’s various state championships and his immaculate record as head coach for South Pointe, not to mention his title of the 2018 National Coach of the Year.
Along with being a football coach, Herron played football in high school and started coaching when he got into college. This is his 32nd year coaching high school football, with eight of those as head coach for South Pointe.
Before becoming a coach at South Pointe, Herron was the defensive coordinator at Clover High School and later took an assistant coaching position at Northwestern High School. He began to want to become a coordinator again soon after taking the position at Northwestern and was on the lookout for any opportunities.
At the time, Bobby Carroll was the head coach at South Pointe, who Herron just happened to have a connection with as Carroll had coached him when he was in high school. When the position opened up, Carroll offered to take Herron on as a coach with him at South Pointe.
He began his coaching career at South Pointe as an assistant coach switching to the offensive coordinator for football in 2006. Although he has a love for coaching football, he has also coached girls and boys basketball, track, soccer, baseball and, even tennis.
“Some I was better at than others to say the least,” says Herron when talking about his coaching experiences.
After a year of coaching the offensive line, Herron was made the defensive coordinator and held that position for four years until he was named the head coach in 2011.
Not only does Herron cherish the game of football, but also the players and coaches who made him the coach he is today.
“There are many coaches who have helped me. Actually too many to mention but I will say that my high school football coach was very impressionable to me,” said Herron.
Herron dedicates his career choice to his high school football coach because he was the one who guided him to look at the coaching path for the future. Along with his high school coach, he mentioned Northwestern high school’s former head coach, Jimmy Wallace, for helping him learn so much about coaching in the short time of two years.
“He was a great motivator and organizer”, said Herron.
Next to coaches, Herron’s players have also made a huge impact on his coaching career. While he was a defensive coordinator, he remembered one player that had a difficult time staying out of trouble and was on the verge of quitting or even being kicked off of the team, but Herron saw something in that player and took him in, talking to him every day like brothers.
His wife, Brigitte Herron, saw the player earlier this year and he told her that, “if it wasn’t for Coach Herron I don’t know where I’d be today”.
Just like that player, Herron faced some different difficulties of coaching. In his first year of being head coach for South Pointe, not many people actually believed he could take his team all the way to the state championships and win.
After winning the 2011 state championship, Herron recalls it as his most memorable game because of how the team overcame all of the uncertainty of their potential.
“It was an emotional game and the feeling is something I will never forget,” exclaimed Herron.
Herron’s proudest moments range from all of his team’s state championship titles, being named the 2018 National Coach of the Year, and especially being at graduation, seeing how excited and happy his players are.
“It’s bitter-sweet but knowing they have been pushed as hard as a person can be pushed. I know they are ready for the world and it is a very proud moment. To be noted as the football coach to reach 100 wins the fastest means a couple of things to me. First, it means that I have been blessed to work with many players and coaches who did a tremendous amount of hard work and gave a tremendous amount of dedication and commitment to being the very best that each one of them could be. Secondly, it means that my name is now on a list with other coaches such as, Keith Richardson, Jimmy Wallace, Bennie McMurray, Jackie Hayes, Doc Davis and many other coaches for which I have much admiration. It is a surreal feeling,” stated Herron.