New Football Coach at Northeast Guilford High School is Interim Coach Jeremy McDaniel:Looking for “Hicone Road Revival”

You don’t often see a team losing their head coach during the season, but that is what happened today at Northeast Guilford(1-8) where Donovan Jackson stepped down with two games remaining in the 2014 season….

Assistant coach Jeremy McDaniel. the Rams offensive coordinator has taken over the team and he will lead NEG into their Senior Night Game this Friday at Bill Bookout Stadium vs. the Warriors, of Western Alamance(7-2)….

Northeast Guilford will close out their season on Friday November 7, at Eastern Alamance(10-0)….

It had been a struggle at NEG over the past two seasons and it is tough when you look to find someone to replace coach Tommy Pursley, who had guided the NEG Rams for 20 years and they had never missed the playoffs during that time and they Rams had never had a losing season under Coach Pursley….Coach Pursley is now the head coach at Tuscola and last check his team was at (4-4) for the season and they were coming off of a loss to their arch-rival, the Pisgah Bears…

Coach McDaniel’s background has him coming in from New Bern where he was an assistant coach for the New Bern Bears and there they won the NCHSSA State 4-AA Title in 2007 and then again in 2012….In 2007, New Bern topped Charlotte Independence and in 2012, it was New Bern over Porter Ridge…

Jeremy McDaniel played college football as a wide receiver at Arizona with the Wildcats for four years and he spent three seasons in the Arena Football League after his college playing days were complete…..McDaniel also spent time on the Buffalo Bills practice squad….

Northeast Guilford has been in a building mode during the past couple of seasons since Coach Pursley left and most did not realize how hard his departure would be felt in the Northeast Guilford Community until he was gone….

Not sure who might in at Northeast Guilford for the long term, but I do remember how hard it was for NEG to get it turned around and the ball moving in the right direction before Coach Pursley arrived…

NEG has much success while Coach Pursley was there and they even survived the redistricting that saw them lose many students to the new Northern Guilford High School back around 2006/2007 and even though NEG felt some sting when the Nighthawks came on the scene, the Rams continued their winning ways and they still qualified for the playoffs every year…

Before Coach Pursley joined the staff out on Hicone Road, the Rams were led by Daniel Barrow and that turned out to be a disaster…Prior to Barrow, the Rams skipper was Daryl Barnes and that was like a joyride for most Rams’ fans….Barnes turned around a program that had fallen on hard times back in the late 70’s/ early 80’s and that was a time period when Northeast was still trying to rebound from the opening of Eastern Guilford High School, and in that case/instance, the Rams lost a couple of busloads of very good athletes to the new-found Wildcats, who used to be the Yellow Jackets, of Gibsonville…Fred Styles was at NEG as the head man during a stretch of this time in 1970’s and Styles turned out to be a pretty good assistant coach at some of his other stops along the way of the coaching caravan…..Fred Yadkin was with the EG Wildcats during key periods of their metamorphosis…

There was a time under the guidance of coach Roy Broyles in the early 1970’s when Northeast Guilford was considered to be one of the top 3-A high school football programs in the state and they had names like Walden, Cook, Apple, Womack, Coltrane, Lee and others to prove it….

Coach Pursley took the Rams back to their “Glory Days of Football” again with State Championship appearances in 1997 against Kannapolis Brown and then again in 2003 vs. South Point, out of Belmont, N.C……

Now Northeast Guilford must go looking for the coach that can lead them back into the thick of Mid-State 3-A competition and applications are being taken as of today, to see who that new man might be…..Looking for a Pursley, a Barnes, a Broyles or someone else who might fit those qualifications…..

They are hoping to see the new NEG become more like the old NEG and they say you can never go home again, but we heard today that Brock Pursley, coach Tommy Pursley’s once young son and now he is the offensive coordinator at Clarke University in Atlanta, having come to Atlanta after serving in the same capacity at Brevard College, up in Brevard….Well there are plenty of fans that would to see a “Hicone Road Revival” led by a young coach like a Brock Pursley, but that is not likely to happen now that Brock knows he is ready to rock and that he has found his niche on the college football level….

The job is open and let the applications start pouring/coming in and I would offer up a few suggestions, but the best bet here is just let “the process take its course”……

*****Portions of this post coming in from phone conversation with the Rams this afternoon…I will take the credit/blame for the historical notes.*****

Coach Tommy Pursley was going to be tough act to follow…from back when Coach Pursley stepped down in November of 2012:
For Coach Pursley, he put in 35 years of coaching and teaching, with 20 of those spent at the helm of the Northeast Guilford Rams’ football team and he won right at 180 games in the 20 years he spent coaching football at NEG…That averages out to 9 wins a season over the 20-year span and his Ram teams never missed the playoffs and only two other teams in the state of North Carolina have matched that record in the 20-year time frame and that has been the Thomasville Bulldogs and the Dark Horses of Clinton…

NEG won 7 conference titles under Coach Pursley’s leadership, 6 district titles and 2 Regional Titles….NEG won the East Regional in 1997 and faced Kannapolis in the State 3-A Championship and Northeast claimed the East Region again in 2003 and met South Point that year for the 3-A Title..

The revealing part of the overall equation is that Northeast never missed the playoffs in the 20 years that Coach Pursley was in charge of the football program…The year before Coach Pursley came in, the NEG Varsity went (1-9) and the JV’s were (0-10) and the year that Coach Pursley took over(1993), the NEG Varsity finished (6-4) and the JV’s went (10-0)…

The Northeast Guilford JV’s won the Conference Championship 16 of 20 years that Coach Pursley and staff worked with them….Numbers show that the NEG JV’s lost right at just 10 games, in that 20-year span….(1993-2012)…..


  1. In 1979 Terry Kelly led The Rams to a 9-1 record.
    In 1982 Tom Frazier led them to a 7-3 record.
    Both of the teams placed 2nd in the old 10 team Triad 3A conference.

  2. I was out-of-state in ’79, but let’s add those two coaches to our timeline at Northeast Guilford…Good names and good games….How long/how much time did they spend at NEG…

    One player that I will never forget was a big kid that was there when Coach Barnes was in at NEG and that was big Jeff Bunton….He was one of the biggest linemen I ever saw at NEG and I think he later played at WSSU…

  3. One of those backs that I won’t forget is Matt Deese…He had some injuries, but that kid was one big back…..

    I remember a game back in the day at NEG and my team got beat 26-20 and I swear I knocked the guy out of bounds over by the NEG bench and Coach Bookout said that his man/the Ram was in, but I know I hit that runner and he was out of bounds….

    Lots of good memories at that old stadium on Hicone Road….

  4. 1979 may have been the year Roger Carmack was a senior. I remember him being a great running back and I think he went to NC State

  5. Would be great to see Ol’ Scott Loosemore at the helm again. NEG would be a perfect fit for him. I know he is over at Page now, but it is only a matter of time before he gets another shot. Scott has been a valued assistant at Grimsley, Greensboro College, and now Page after a successful tenure at Eastern Guilford.


  6. Arrogance is a bad thing to have when your team is not winning ball games and they look as unprepared as can be.

  7. northeast does not need to rush this decision. They need to decide what type of coach to go after. Either a young upcoming guy or older established coach. There are good candidates out there. They need to get a coach who would tap in to the winning traditions of past with their on spin on it. That was coach Jackson’s downfall . To much change to fast. My only gripe is coach Jackson should have finished what he started. A coach would never preach to his players to tow the line, never give up, and team first and him just walk away. Actions reflect character.

  8. At NEG it is time to get to work and the key four words will wear well out there and they need to put these to good use:

    “All Hands on Deck”…..

    Time to hit it, time to get it done…And there is no rush…..Finish the regular season and take time to get the right man in there and Scott Loosemore might be right man….

    What is not right at one place might work out better at another, you never know….

  9. Looking to shut the comments down for now/Lunch and will try and open them back up this afternoon, if everyone is on their best behavior….

  10. I personally played for coach Loosemore and looked up to him a lot as my head coach! The amount of time and effort that he put into the program at eastern was amazing! NEG would be lucky to get a coach like Loosemore! Really hope that I get to see the start of a Loosemore era at NEG!

  11. Scott loosemore, would be the right coach for this job. A proven, experienced, hard working coach that will pour his heart into the community, players, and football…. NE. Community get the word out to the principle and AD TO HIRE SCOTT LOOSEMORE……. YOU WILL SEE AN IMMEDIATE CHANGE…..

  12. I don’t see where all the love for Loosemore is coming from as far as the EG community is concerned. I remember the fans not being so happy about his tenure when the decision was made to part ways. Not trying to down the guy, I believe he had some fantastic offenses and I know through coaches that he put in the time and effort but your record is what it is. I don’t remember a lot of winning going on over at Eastern under his watch. I bet there will be a lot of good coaches apply for that position. If Loosemore is the best man for the job, I hope he gets it and turns around that program.

  13. Guess who
    It’s kind of hard to have a good program if the people in the community are a bunch of fair weather fans who are only there for te good times and if you have an athletic director who’s 100% focused on a baseball program! With what Loosemore was given he made the best of it an I personally think that without him an some of the sacrifices he made the EG football program would not be what it is today!

  14. GuessWho think about it for a minute Eastern didn’t have that many wins while under Loosemore. So why would Eastern fans want him at their rival school. (Wait for it) Do you get it now?

  15. Iwhat about some of the old staff that was there before Jackson. Where are they now? Would they be intrested in the job?

  16. the current NE situation seems very similar to what Coach Loosemore inherited at EG back in 2006. regardless of how or why it ended, that program was in much better shape when he left than it was when he arrived. the Wildcats who graduated last year, a year in which they won 7 games, played 2 years in Coach Loosemore’s system and this year’s graduating class played their freshmen year for Loosemore. at least 3 of the coaches on the current staff worked for him at EG. no doubt he would do whatever work necessary. but if half of the things the former coach complained about in the News and Record article are true, it will be an uphill battle for whoever gets the job. I do think Coach Loosemore deserves another shot at a head coaching position, if that’s what he really wants.

  17. If you back up to when Loosemore was at Eastern and look at the Eastern Middle School records you will see their were several years in there where the Middle school was undefeated or had only one lose, but when you get to the High School you can’t find the kids that played at Eastern Middle. Their were several cases where like I said before our best athletes were in the stands or check on Noertheast roster or Western Alamance roster because the kids wouldn’t play for Loosemore. Talk to the coaches that were there while Loosemore was there and ask them about the attitudes. I think Loosemore is a good offensive cordinator but feel sorry for anyone that would put him back as a head coach.

  18. You need to find a coach that not only won games he was supposed to win but the coach who one games he wasn’t. I think that’s what NE did under coach Pursley.

  19. @Wildcat Fan
    several of those kids left for reasons other than Loosemore; they would have left regardless of who the football coach was; in some cases football was not the only sport they played. and some of those kids did not play at the high school for academic reasons. its much easier to stay eligible at the middle school level than it is at the high school level. not saying everything was perfect, but Coach Loosemore could make a positive difference at a lot of schools, Northeast included.

  20. NEG needs to find a proven winner, someone out of the area with some possible to the NEG community, EG football program hasn’t been that relevant since Tommy Grayson, a good regular season means nothing. Only post season wins truly count that has always been the NEG tradition, EG has how many post season wins? NEG needs to take their time, any really examine their football program and get it back to good standing. NEG should look well beyond EG to find the right candidate. Timing is everything, they have too much to lose by hiring someone from a mediocre program, again no real post season experience since coach Grayson. NEG will get it right without making knee jerk reaction hires. IMO

  21. We’ll be giving everybody a break for a couple of hours and load this back up later on tonight….

  22. Mendenhall had 2 great coaches Christian Hill and Kevin Hopkins who turned their program around 3 yrs ago who I think would be great for their young men. If I’m not mistaken one of them is at one of the HP schools now and the other isn’t coaching this year. Oh Aycock’s coach Jones from last year with them would be great too.

  23. panthercat11…..NEHS does not need middle school coaches who are probably not even on staff. You do not need jack-leg coaches. You need someone who is proven, as well as someone who can deal with administration on the high school level. Some people think that all you need to do is watch NFL network, read a couple of books, play playstation, have a little enthusiasm, and scream alot. Those things are for recreation football. As a head coach you have to be able to coach your coaches, coach your players, deal with the academics, deal with admin, teachers, parents, PTA, boosters…just for starters. I worked with Tommy Pursley and I can tell you he had a program, and not just a team. That is what you need to build. Get a
    coach who is on staff as well as his assistants.

  24. McDaniel’s, unlike Coach Jackson, has the respect of the football players in the football program now and the upcoming football program. He knows the students and I believe he can do big things with the team. Yes, this is a lot of pressure for him, however, given the talent on the team, respect of the players, and the “how not to” from his predecessor he can do big things. They look forward to playing for him for these last two games and the years to come. Also, imagine the pre-game pep talk.

  25. @Street All 3 of the coaches I named are employees of GCS and not outside coaches. Hill and Hopkins is still at MMS just not coaching, both have 8 or 9 yrs of coaching and preach student first before athletics and I know first hand as my neighbor played for both of them. If you ever watched them play they were the only school in the county who had a high school program at the middle school level.

  26. MS coaches who are not coaching hired as HS head FB coach. I doubt that this will happen. Someone asked about the former assistant coaches at NE and where are they now. Two are at E. Guilford HS, one is in Wilmington,NC, one is in Harrisburg, NC, one is at NEMS, and two are retired and one is still teaching but out of coaching in anothwer school.

  27. Hey coach Blue…Please add this one to the vault of funny quotes:

    “Dont worry if the mule is blind, just load the wagon”

  28. I played for Coach Pursley from the 2007 season till my senior season of 2010 and I can honestly say Coach Pursley was a great coach, Yes of course he knew what he was doing I mean he could take whatever group of people he had on a team and configure successful plays to fit those people and allow success. He supervised the weight training program daily that every football player was required to take, he also took the time to make sure all his players were doing well academically and also staying out of trouble. Coach Pursley wasn’t just about football though he spoke to us all almost everyday about why we should have good character, and have some pride in ourselves, I mean he cared about his players and wanted us to do great not just on the field but off the field as well. There was never a moment on friday night that he didn’t know what play to call if a situation arose, he had so much experience that he had seen it all and could adapt to anything. Finally it wasn’t just Coach Pursley, he had a great coaching staff full of experience such as Coach Bob Via, Coach Gary Angel, Coach Richard Sisk, Coach Glen Goss, and several others who knew what they were doing, and were actually really great coaches who really taught me a lot through the years and some of the advice they gave me I still use today as a volunteer firefighter, and also as a MBA student at Campbell University.

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