JEFFERSONVILLE – Twiggs County turned to a familiar face to lead its football program.
The most successful coach in school history, head coach Dexter Copeland, is returning to lead a beleaguered football program that has won just seven total games since he left for Baldwin in 2010. Copeland won seven games or more in a single season alone in seven of his nine seasons at Twiggs County.
Copeland will be the fourth coach in five years for the Cobras, who are 7-33 over the past four years.
Copeland, who played high school football at Northside, took over at Twiggs County in 2001.
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After going 3-7 in his first year in Jeffersonville, Copeland led the Cobras on a string of three 10-win seasons. He had only one more losing season after the first one in 2001. During that stretch, the Cobras went to the playoffs seven times, advancing to at least the second round five times. They played in the Class A quarterfinals in 2002, 2005 and 2009.
Copeland coached Darqueze Dennard, a Michigan State senior who recently won the Jim Thorpe Award as college football’s best defensive back and is a projected first round NFL draft pick.
Copeland left Twiggs County for Baldwin in 2010, a move that he said in December he probably shouldn’t have made.
He had initial success at Baldwin, going 10-2 in 2010 and earning The Telegraph’s All-Middle Georgia Coach of the Year award. He went 8-3 and 6-5 in the following years, making the playoffs each time.
The Braves stumbled to 3-7 this past season and missed the playoffs for the first time in a decade. He was dismissed following the season.
Baldwin lost its final four games in 2013. The Braves’ last victory, a 28-13 win over Rutland, gave Copeland his 100th career win. He is 100-49 overall.
Copeland replaced Jeb Stewart, who went 5-15 in two seasons. Stewart actually led a turnaround after the Cobras went 2-18 in the two years after Copeland left.