JENNIFER FIERRO • STAFF WRITER
MARBLE FALLS — Area high schools continue with staff changes following resignations.
At Marble Falls High School, the Mustangs football team team has a new co-offensive coordinator.
Ryan Priem joined the staff April 11, days before spring practice begins April 25.
Priem worked with athletic director and head football coach Matt Green at Lucas Lovejoy two years ago and also will coach the wide receivers. He replaces Robby Coplin, who took over as the athletic director and head football coach at New Diana about a month ago.
The Mustangs’ other co-offensive coordinator is Mike Birdwell, who also coaches running backs. He, Green, Priem and defensive coordinator Chad Bishop all worked at Lucas Lovejoy.
Green said the continuity of the staff is important for the program. It also helps that Priem already knows the ins and outs of the offense, something he was versed in when he worked with Green at Lake Travis about five years ago.
“Ryan has a strong background with the offense,” Green said. “It’s a neat dynamic. I think the three of us complement each other well on top of the current coaches who work here already.”
The head coach, who coaches the quarterbacks, said Birdwell and Priem will express their thoughts on game plans and play calls, which is something he loves, he said.
“There are no egos involved,” he said. “Egos get in the way.”
Llano athletic director and head football coach Craig Slaughter announced that Joe Downey has resigned as girls athletic coordinator and head basketball coach and that Blake Sieck resigned as boys head basketball coach.
Downey will become a boys assistant coach and will coach running backs for the Llano football team. This way, he can watch his son Kendall, a freshman, play.
Slaughter said the district has been taking applications and hopes to begin interviews for a new girls athletic coordinator and coach April 15.
“I hope we have the position filled within the next two weeks,” he said. “We’ve had some great candidates.”
On the football staff, Slaughter will absorb the offensive coordinator duties on top of coaching quarterbacks. Former offensive coordinator Jarrett Vickers took over as the head football coach and athletic director at Claude High School in February.
Vickers’ departure means the Yellow Jackets still have an opening on the staff. Slaughter said he plans to fill that hole by hiring a defensive coach.