JENNIFER FIERRO • PICAYUNE STAFF
BURNET — Welcome back Todd Doucet and Jerod Rye.
That’s how Burnet High School athletic director Kurt Jones described the re-hiring of two coaches who helped the Bulldogs earn a large portion of the trophy case in the past decade.
Doucet comes back as the head baseball coach, four years after guiding Burnet to the Class 3A Region I championship, where they were one series win away from qualifying for the state tournament.
“I guess we were fortunate,” Jones said with a smile. “I always had a good relationship with Todd and knew that he was interested in the position. Anytime you have a resume like Todd Doucet’s, that surfaces to the top. We felt rock solid about getting him back in Burnet.”
Rye is the new Burnet Middle School boys coordinator, returning about a decade after leaving as the high school football team’s offensive coordinator.
Jones called Rye one of his closest friends in the profession. The two started as position coaches for former head football coach and athletic director Bob Shipley for three years. Then Shipley promoted the two, naming Jones his defensive coordinator and Rye his offensive coordinator.
When former coordinator Robbie Clark, now a member of the Austin Westlake staff, became the head coach at Midlothian, he hired Rye as his offensive coordinator.
The athletic director said Rye was excited about the middle school coordinator position. He said Rye fits the profile of what the athletic department needs from its coordinator: someone who emphasizes fundamentals and basics, can communicate well to groups of players who are still learning and developing, can keep the players excited about playing sports, and can get along with parents and fans.
“A technician and disciplinarian,” Jones said. “We feel like we hit a home run in getting him back. He’s a natural leader and will come in and do an outstanding job. (The Ryes) love this community.”
Doucet spent last season as an assistant baseball coach at Lake Travis after a three-year stint as the Fredericksburg head coach.
He said he looks forward to leading Burnet again, noting he has many wonderful memories of the community, the athletes, the school district and the fans.
“I always felt like Burnet is home,” he said. “I enjoyed my time at Burnet.”
Jones said Doucet’s coaching style and approach makes him uniquely qualified. Doucet is able to honestly look at his team’s strengths and determine how to utilize them in order to be successful. That includes pitching staffs, defenders and batting orders.
“Todd does a great job of looking at his teams, no matter their make-up, and puts them in the best chance of winning,” he said. “He’s got a great track record.”
“My philosophy in coaching is to do things right,” Doucet said. “I take pride in doing well with the community, in being a good servant. Baseball is a platform to where you can learn to do things right. It’s a public platform to learn to be a young man.”
Coaching at Lake Travis allowed him to watch his daughter, Fredericksburg senior Ashley Doucet, play volleyball and basketball last year.
“That was worth a million dollars,” he said.
And while his success speaks for itself, the athletic director said the way Doucet develops relationships off the field and the way he lives his life is exactly what the Bulldogs need.
“He’s a super-high-integrity guy,” he said. “You count all those things together. I think he helps Burnet baseball have a great chance at being successful. We’re super happy to have him back.”