Derrick Webb, Staff Writer
BAINBRIDGE — Make no mistake about it, Corey Dye knows exactly what he’s walking into.
On Dec. 19, Pete Hollon stepped away from Paint Valley’s football program after 24 years. That decision set off a chain of events, and sparked a search for a new head coach.
After nearly two months, Dye has been tabbed to replace Hollon … a move that the Board of Education is expected to make official on Feb. 11.
“Paint Valley has so much to offer. When I walked through the hallways, it gave me goosebumps,” Dye said. “I had this incredible feeling of school spirit and pride. The football stadium and the facilities are so impressive and it’s one of the best stadiums in the state. I could really tell that this was a special place to be and I couldn’t help but want to be a part of it.”
The shoes that Dye will try and fill aren’t small by any means.
Hollon was 154-95-1 with the Bearcats and led the program to seven Scioto Valley Conference titles and eight playoff appearances.
But Dye is well aware of that and, instead of focusing on replacing Hollon, he’s trying to continue and build on the foundation that has been set.
“When I interviewed with the hiring committee, I could see how much pride they had for this school district and how much they truly cared about their football program,” Dye said. “They wanted to hire a coach that had as much love and passion for his players as Pete had. I truly admire the job that Pete and his staff have done for this program over the last 24 years. There aren’t too many programs in this area that have had as much success in football as Paint Valley. I know filling Pete’s shoes will be a tough task, but I am as committed as ever to make sure that the rich football tradition at Paint Valley continues.”
Dye’s football background is an extensive one.
After graduating in 2000 from Muskingum University, where he played football, he started his coaching career as an assistant under John Enochs at Washington. He helped the Blue Lions win BAC championships in 2000 and 2001 and clinch postseason berths in 2001 and 2007.
In 2009, he began a seven-year stint as Washington’s head football coach. During that time, the program finished as the SCOL runner-up in 2010 and went to the playoffs that same year.
After resigning as the head coach in 2015, after leading the team to an overall record of 36-35, he continued to serve as an assistant coach up until this past fall.
Now, he finds himself in Bainbridge to take on a brand new challenge. On his to-do list are four immediate things … win SVC titles, win the Maple Leaf Trophy, make the playoffs and play in Canton.
“One of the biggest factors of why I chose to be the football coach at Paint Valley was how much support and love this community has for its school and its football program,” Dye said. “I hope to carry on the rich tradition here. I want all Paint Valley football alumni to know that they are always part of the football family. Once a Paint Valley Bearcat, always a Paint Valley Bearcat. We will continue to be the most aggressive and hardest hitting team in the SVC.”