Rogers to guide wide-open attack at Meridian High
OFFENSIVE MIND Wyatt Rogers is expected to be approved next month as the new offensive coordinator at Meridian High School. He is a former head coach at Lamar School and led Winston Academy to two MPSA State Championships. Last season he was an assistant coach at UT-Martin, an NCAA Division I-AA school. Photo by Jeff Byrd/The Meridian Star
By Jeff Byrd / staff writer
May 24, 2002
Being on the road proved to be too long and too lonely for Wyatt Rogers. That's the big reason why he jumped at the chance to join the staff of new Meridian High School head football coach Ed Stanley.
In his seven years as a football coach, Rogers has been a high school head coach and a college assistant. One of his head coaching stints was at Lamar School in 1998. He also helped lead Winston Academy to two State Academy AA championships in 1999 and 2000.
Then he decided to step back into the college ranks at Tennessee-Martin after being recommended for the job by one of his former coaching colleagues while at Delta State University. He spent a year as the wide receivers coach for former Meridian High standout Sam McCorkle at UT-Martin.
It was there where the road finally caught up to Rogers.
When Stanley went searching for an offensive coordinator, Rogers fit the bill. Rogers is expected to be officially approved by the Meridian Public Schools Board of Trustees in mid-June.
Long known for using the power-running game, Stanley was also looking for a change.
Rogers brought in a new offense, a spread formation based out of a shotgun with four wide receivers and one running back.
This is the type of offense that will bring kids out to play. It's going to be like basketball on cleats. And we're going to have fun with it," Rogers said.
The new offense made its debut at last week's spring game against Jackson Callaway at Ray Stadium. The Wildcats totaled 224 yards in total offense through three quarters including 128 passing off nine completions. And it was on a wet field.
Ken Mitts is the starter and had a good game completing 5-of-9 passes for 94 yards and a touchdown. Anthony Brown brings running ability to the position, scrambling for 38 yards on one play.
A breakout player could be freshman receiver J.B. Byrd. He caught a 32-yard touchdown pass from Mitts. He also had 24-yard catch.
The offense will also feature Cardae Campbell, the Wildcats' returning leader rusher from last year.
Having a solid, mobile offensive line is another challenge.
Rogers played high school football at Tattenell Square Academy in Macon, Ga. He then went to school at Ole Miss getting a degree in Athletic Administration. His first coaching job was at Briarfield Academy in Louisiana.
He then took his first college position as a running backs coach at Delta State. There he helped coach Tregnal Thomas to a single-season school and Gulf South Conference rushing record of over 1,600 yards. Thomas was named the first Charles Conerly Award winner, symbolizing the top college football player in Mississippi.
Rogers left Delta State in 1998 to take the head job at Lamar.