Football season is more than half a year away, but for Thomasville athletic director Steve Bare, it is front and center as the difficult task begins to find a replacement for head coach Allen Brown, who retired at the end of last season.

Throughout December, more than 40 applications were received for one of the most prestigious high school football positions in the state. Interest was high, and in a few short weeks Bare hopes to announce who will guide the Bulldogs in the future. The interview process is the next phase for the committee that will select the new head man.

“We took applications through Tuesday afternoon,” said Bare. “Now we are contacting some folks about interviews and will begin those in the next week or two. From that group we will establish a group of candidates that we consider to be our finalists. We would like to have all of this wrapped up by the end of the month.”

This will be no ordinary hire. Replacing a legendary coach like Brown is no walk in the park. For decades he built the THS program into a powerhouse at the 1-A and 2-A levels. He won four state titles and had more than 300 wins. For those reasons, the Thomasville job is a high-profile position which has sparked interest far and wide.

“We have gotten some applications from throughout the region,” Bare said. “That was neat to have the opportunity to talk to folks from different parts of the country. We are in a unique position because we have such a strong heritage to draw from. We are lucky in the sense there are people in our area who know about the rich tradition Thomasville has. That has been a huge plus for us in this process.”

Bare is only one of many who will have a say in the selection process. Principal Deboy Beamon, Thomasville City Schools Superintendent Dr. Maria Pitre-Martin, and others within the administration will assist in the process.

“We are excited about finding the next head coach for Thomasville and finding the man that is going to lead us in the next era of this great tradition,” Bare said. “I am really excited to be a part of it.”

Sports Editor Zach Kepley can be reached at 888-3631, or