Four years after leaving Chico, Pete Hart is a head football coach again.
The Alvord defensive coordinator was promoted to the top football spot and the athletic director Thursday night.
Hart, who is beginning his third year at Alvord, believes the program is ready to take off.
“We’re excited. We’ve got a lot of pieces to be successful,” Hart said Friday morning after being extended a two-year pact.
Hart spent eight seasons at Chico, going 12-68 as the head coach as the small school in a 2A district. Since leaving Chico, he went to Bridgeport for two seasons. He’s spent the past two years at Alvord as Curtis Enis’ defensive coordinator.
He now replaces Enis, who resigned last month to go to Burleson as the girls basketball coach.
Alvord was 3-7 last year as the smallest school in their Class 2A Division II district. Alvord will be in the new 5-2A Division I – the old Class A Division II – this year.
Alvord returns running back Joe Randall that ran for 1,251 yards and 16 touchdowns a year ago and eight starters on the defensive side of the ball.
“We had a lot of kids that played a lot of minutes on varsity as freshmen and sophomores last year,” Hart said. “They are now another year bigger and stronger. There’s a lot of talented kids. We have to put a plan in place to perform.”
Along with Hart, most of the Alvord staff will return for this year. Hart said that will pay big dividends.
“With the exception of Enis, the staff is the same,” he said. “They’ve been working and teaching these kids for two years. That will allow us to be successful.”
Hart said many of the players in the program came to him after Enis left and asked for him to apply for the job to keep the staff in place.
“It wasn’t just about keeping Coach Hart. They wanted to keep the staff,” Hart said.
The 28-year coaching veteran has spent his entire career at Wise County schools. In his stops, he’s been able to develop strong relationships with players.
“I’ve had others tell me that I’m a players’ coach,” Hart said. “I relate to them well and have a soft spot for every kid.
“I never lie to them. I’m very honest with them about what I ask for them to do. If a kid trusts a coach, they will run through a brick wall for them.”
While Hart values the lifelong friendships he’s developed over the years with his players, he’s quick to point out that they must be successful at the end of the day.
“It is about winning,” Hart said.