RED OAK — After 28 years coaching Texas high school football, Brian Brown is ready for his next adventure.
The Red Oak head football coach officially announced his retirement Thursday.
Brown also announced his resignation as the head football coach, effective immediately. He will stay on with Red Oak ISD as a physical education instructor and teacher through the end of the school year.
"I thought we worked hard. I thought the coaches we had did a great job, and I'm proud of the effort they gave," Brown said. "The kids have all played hard. You can make an excuse after excuse, but I'm not going to go into all of that. We had some tough games, but I thought our kids played really well and got better each year."
Brown added, "[...] "I think they're going to be good times coming for Red Oak. I think the younger groups have some players. I also think our administration is moving in a great direction to try to upgrade our facilities and really wants to win football games."
Red Oak ISD Athletic Director Chris Anderson stated that the search for Brown's replacement will begin immediately. He also thanked Brown for his work with the football program and work with the student-athletes.
“Brian Brown has dedicated four years to Red Oak ISD and we are appreciative of his contributions to our program," Anderson added. "His leadership and dedication have given every student-athlete in ROISD the opportunity to be successful on and off the field. We wish Brian and his family nothing but the best going forward."
Brown began his coaching career at Liberty-Eylau in Texarkana, which is where he was able to help the Leopards to a pair of state championships in 1999 and 2006.
The first state championship was led by head coach David Ream, which is how Brown found himself roaming the sidelines as a Waxahachie Indian from 2000-04. He then returned to Liberty-Eylau in 2005 as an assistant coach before taking over as the head coach from 2011-13.
Brown moved back to the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex from East Texas with a 16-16 record and two playoff appearances as a head coach to take over the reins of the Red Oak program. He finished his tenure in Red Oak with a 21-51 career record.
"You learn a little bit about each stop," Brown said. "I was fortunate enough to be a part of two state championship teams in Liberty-Eylau with a really great staff that I learned a lot from with David Ream being the head coach. Then in Waxahachie, it is just a great football town, and we enjoyed some great years there. This last journey in Red Oak I have enjoyed really great support from administration. Being the head coach of a large 5A school has been fun. You really do take something away from each one and I have enjoyed each place. Hopefully, I've helped a few kids along the way."
One of those kids that Brown coached and certainly helped was his son, Kevin, who now serves as the offensive coordinator at Mildred High School after spending last year in Red Oak.
"Playing for my dad was a special experience. He accomplished a lot in his career and won a lot of ball games, but more importantly, he taught me a lot of important lessons," Kevin said. "He's as honest and loyal as they come, and he always has his 'families' back. Family meaning blood family, as well as his coaching staff and players.
"I also admire his toughness and the way he handles adversity head-on with class. When I had the opportunity to coach with my dad, it was a no-brainer. We had a lot of fun, and I learned a lot coaching with him. [...] Most of all, congrats on the retirement and thank you for teaching me how to be a man."
The elder Brown recalled his time as Kevin's position coach at Liberty-Eylau, and, with a hearty chuckle, said it was "interesting, to say the least."
"I got to coach him on some pretty good teams, and then he got to work here with me. I know he enjoyed his time here and he had some kids who really enjoyed him," Brown added. "He is lucky that he is now an offensive coordinator at a young age. I'm excited to catch their playoff game this week."
Brown was also quick to admit that he will miss the coaching tree that has been created across the state over his 28 years. He stated, "It's a connection that you keep for the rest of your life."
Brown said he plans to head back east toward Texarkana, because "that's where my wife wants to retire." He also won't rule out the possibility of roaming an Arkansas High School sideline at some point down the road, either.