Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

July 17, 2013

Kelley departs JHS; named as new coach at rival Whitehouse

Jay Neal
Jacksonville Daily Progress

JACKSONVILLE — It's often been said when opportunity knocks one must answer the door.

That's exactly what Brent Kelley did on Monday when he accepted a new job at Whitehouse High School as the school's head boy's basketball coach and head golf coach.

Kelley was responsible for the Jacksonville basketball Indians going 106-30 in his four years as Tribe mentor which was highlighted by three district titles and one regional tournament appearance.

Among the many awards that Kelley garnered during his time in Jacksonville were being named District 16-4A Coach of the Year last season as well as being selected as The Jacksonville Daily Progress Sportsman of the Year for 2012.

Kelley said that it was difficult decision to leave Jacksonville, but that he felt the Whitehouse opportunity was one that would benefit his entire family.

"I've coached in the Jacksonville school district for seven years and have made some good friends and have had an opportunity to coach a bunch of great kids, so it wasn't easy to leave Jacksonville,” Kelley said. "At Whitehouse I will be coaching boys basketball and golf, two sports that I really enjoy, and by not having to coach football, I will have a lot more time to spend with my family and that is something that is important to me."

Kelley, a product of Garrison High School and Stephen F. Austin State University, and wife Abbie are parents of two young children.

Kelley said that he expects the Jacksonville boy's basketball program to continue to do well in the future and that he wishes the team nothing but the best, except for the two games when the Tribe will be playing his Wildcats.

"As I have said many times, there is so much basketball talent in Jacksonville year after year, and I don't expect that to change," Kelley said. "People in Jacksonville love and support Indian basketball and that will continue on regardless."

Kelley takes over for Ryan Tomlin, who recently resigned to take an administrative position within the Lindale Independent School District.

The job opening for head boy's basketball coach at JHS was officially posted on Monday.