Riverside hires Bill Stubbs as its new football coach
Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 18, 2012
By RYAN ARENA
RESERVE – Riverside concluded its search for a new head football coach by making a major splash, officially coming to terms with former Salmen coach Bill Stubbs on Friday.
Stubbs is a well-recognized and highly-accomplished name in the prep football world. He guided his Spartans to three state championships and put together a sensational career win-loss record of 143-40 over 15 seasons at Salmen, from 1987 to 2001.
“We had a lot of good applicants that we’d have been happy with,“ said Riverside Athletic Director Timmy Byrd. “But at the end of the day, it’s not often that you find a perfect fit. And that’s what we feel we have. To get a Hall of Fame coach like Coach Stubbs, we had to be sure we seized the opportunity.”
The hiring concluded a search conducted by Byrd, Riverside principal Dr. Perry DiCarlo and girls Athletic Director Kristy Hebert that spanned two months and over 40 applicants.
It began after the resignation of Mickey Roussel, who stepped down in mid-December after 22 seasons at the school. Roussel led the Rebels to three state finals, four semifinals and a 196-82 overall record. Last season, Riverside was 8-4 and reached the regional round of the Class 2A playoffs.
Stubbs said that he’d always had a return in the back of his mind, but maintained he wouldn’t do it unless “the absolute right situation” came about.
This was such a situation, he said.
“I visited Tuesday and was very impressed with what I saw,” said Stubbs, who attended Riverside’s boys basketball game against St. Augustine. “I was impressed by the atmosphere and with how the kids on the floor and in the stands conducted themselves. I brought my wife to the game, and on our way home we talked and agreed that this was something worth investigating.”
Stubbs and Byrd both spoke of a shared vision of what the football program would grow into, a vision that Stubbs said was shared by essentially everyone he spoke with in the Riverside community over the past week.
“They want to be the best of the best,” Stubbs said. “And that’s not a pie in the sky idea … it became a no-brainer. And when I sat down with Dr. DiCarlo (Friday), there was nothing left to do but to make it happen. And now the work begins.”
For more details, check L’Observateur’s Wednesday edition.