Sequatchie County has turned its football program over to a coach with championship experience. The school announced it has hired Rusty McIntyre, who helped guide Fayetteville to last season's Class 1A state title as offensive coordinator, as its new head coach.
"He has an impressive background in both coaching and as a classroom teacher. We took our time to make sure we found the right person but after two sets of interviews we felt like he was clearly the best choice all around," said school principal Regina Belknap. "We felt a little pressure because we're already into the summer but we wanted to take our time to make sure we found the right person."
McIntyre takes over for Mark Wattenbarger, who stepped down on May 18 after three seasons. Wattenbarger, who accepted an offensive assistant's job at Rhea County, compiled a 16-17 overall record with the Indians, going 8-4 in his first season and 6-5 the next with playoff losses to Red Bank each of those years.
Last year, injuries — including five players going down during one 12-minute span — took a toll and the team finished 2-8.
McIntyre worked as offensive coordinator at Lawrence County, Alabama and offensive line coach at Cleveland (2017-18) before joining the Fayetteville staff. On its way to the program's first state championship last year, Fayetteville scored 28-plus points in eight of its 15 games, finishing 13-2 overall, including a 20-14 win over South Pittsburg in the title game.
"As I was looking into this job I was blown away by the support the community gives to the school," McIntyre said. "I have three young kids so it was important to find a good school for them. The facilities are top-notch too so it checked all the boxes.
"It's a little bit of a tough situation because we are behind everybody else but the Lord has blessed me with this opportunity and I'm excited to start building a relationship with the players. There's a lot of other things we have to get done but those relationships are my focus right now."
Contact Stephen Hargis at email@example.com or 423-757-6293. Follow him on Twitter @StephenHargis.