Jones County hires Griffin OC

jheeter@macon.comApril 16, 2014 

Griffin offensive coordinator Justin Rogers was approved as the new head football coach at Jones County on Tuesday night.

Rogers helped lead Griffin to a state championship this past season, the school’s first state championship in 35 years. He will start at the school Monday.

The Bears went 15-0 on the season, scoring less than 32 points only once (a 25-20 win over Wayne County in the state semifinals). They averaged 42.7 points per game and scored 641 on the season. The Bears beat Carrollton 56-35 in the state championship game at the Georgia Dome.

Rogers’ offense was explosive, led by quarterback Jaquez Parks.

Parks, the Georgia Sports Writers Association All-Classification Player of the Year, passed for 3,640 yards and 28 touchdowns and rushed for 1,329 yards and 17 touchdowns. He passed for 338 yards and four touchdowns and rushed for 216 yards and another touchdown in the state championship victory, breaking the state record for yards per scrimmage in a title game.

“I started coaching him as a freshman,” Rogers said. “He bought in, allowed himself to be coached harder. I used that as a motivation here at Jones County. He was extremely efficient. He was Mr. Football in the state, led us to a state title and had one Division I offer from Air Force. You don’t to have monster size to be an effective leader.”

Griffin also had three receivers with FBS scholarship offers and two who had more than 800 receiving yards.

Rogers hopes to install a similar spread offense at Jones County, although he’ll let personnel dictate which elements to add in. Some years, Rogers said, the offense could have pieces of the wing-T and other years it may be more read option or dropback passing based.

“Any time you install something new, whether it’s an offense or a defense or a new floor in your house, it has to come in waves,” he said. “The spread is the greatest high school offense there is. I can’t recruit my kids. I have to put them in the best position to succeed.”

Rogers replaces Dwight Jones, who left for Harris County in February.

Jones had a successful run at Jones County, going 31-30 in six seasons. He led the Greyhounds to a 7-4 record in 2012, leading them to the playoffs for the first time in eight years. The seven wins was the most for the Greyhounds in 11 years and only the ninth in school history.

Jones is only the second coach in school history to last six years in Gray, following Bubba Williams, who went 46-57-1 from 1984-93.

“Dwight built some stability,” Rogers said. “I think you could start to see this was a dynamic job that could compete at the state level. …Jones County is right there on the cusp. This isn’t as rural a population as it once was. People work in Macon, Warner Robins and Milledgeville, but they live here. I like there are more athletes here than ever.”

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