|« Randy Hanson Hired as Secondary Coach at Cal Poly||Seon Jones in a new role for Georgia Southern »|
New coach Shealy eager to put Houston Baptist on field in 2013
At the moment, there are no footballs anywhere on campus, no players, no coaching staff. Vic Shealy doesn’t even have an office.
“I’ll work out of my car right now,” Shealy said Monday after being introduced as the first head football coach in Houston Baptist University history. “If I need to put a needle in a ball and pump it up, then I’m not too good to do that.”
The 50-year-old son of a football coach who has worked under legendary coaches Grant Teaff and Fisher DeBerry said the goal is to make the start-up HBU program competitive and eventually contenders that will “pursue championships” as a member of the Southland Conference.
HBU begins play in the SLC, which competes in Football Championship Subdivision, in 2014.
Athletic director Steve Moniaci said there is a possibility the school could play an ‘exhibition-type’ schedule – consisting of Division I and II, junior college and even a team from Monterrey, Mexico – next year.
“I want to play in ’13,” said Shealy, who spent the past two seasons at Kansas.
Building a program from scratch, Shealy said the immediate priorities are to fill two positions on his coaching staff – possibly one by the end of this week – and hit the recruiting trail.
“Our goal is to take Greater Houston and make that our backdoor,” said Shealy, who anticipates welcoming some of his first recruiting class – a combination of high school and junior-college transfers - to the southwest Houston campus by August.
HBU selected Shealy from a pool of nearly 100 applicants, a process that was whittled down to five finalists interviewed during the past couple of weeks.
“This is a wonderful moment in our history,” HBU president Dr. Robert B. Sloan Jr. said. “I really feel like today we are off and running.”
What separated Shealy from the other finalists was a detailed outline of how he would build the program from the ground floor, Moniaci said. As part of the interview process, Shealy submitted a 26-page “Plan for Success” of how he would grow the program.
“He had a plan, and he knew exactly what the plan was going to be,” Moniaci said. “He told me, ‘this is what we need to do first, this is what we need to do second, this is what we need to do third.’ That was huge.”
After beginning as a graduate assistant at Baylor, Shealy has spent most of the past 25 years developing a defensive reputation with stops at Mars Hill College, Austin Peay, Azusa Pacific, Air Force, UNLV, Richmond and Kansas. In his only previous head coaching job, Shealy led Azusa Pacific to an NAIA title in 1998.
Last season at Kansas, Shealy was forced into the role of defensive coordinator after Carl Torbush abruptly retired because of prostate cancer. The Jayhawks finished last among 120 Football Bowl Subdivision schools in total defense and scoring defense.
Shealy said the opportunity to put his stamp on a new program is exciting. So is the chance for his wife Holly, who attended Bay Area Christian, to return home.
“I think y’all have us for a good long while,” Shealy said.
By Joseph Duarte, Houston Chronicle