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Chaparral has a football staff built to win championships. Here's why

By Richard Obert‏, 04/19/17, 7:00PM MST


Chaparral head coach Conrad Hamilton talks to his team during a high school football game against Chandler at Chaparral in Scottsdale. 2015. (Photo: Cheryl Evans/azcentral sports)

Scottsdale Chaparral is welcoming back former head football coach Conrad Hamilton after spending last season as a senior defensive analyst for Arizona State.

Hamilton will be on campus as a teacher in the physical education and will have the titles executive head coach and defensive coordinator, Athletic Director Tommy Eubanks said Friday.

Eubanks said that Thomas Lewis still will run the show as head coach, but the two men agreed on the titles.

Lewis also made a big offseason move by hiring former Phoenix Horizon head coach Kris Heavner as offensive coordinator, giving up the reins he held the last two years.

After suffering its first losing season (5-6) in 21 years, Chaparral has put together a coaching staff that could bring back state championships, something it hasn't experienced since 2011, when Charlie Ragle led the Firebirds to a third consecutive crown, before leaving for the college ranks, joining Rich Rodriguez at Arizona. Ragle now is an assistant coach at California.

Hamilton was part of Ragle's staff at Chaparral, serving as defensive coordinator on the 2009, '10 title teams, before taking over the Phoenix North Canyon program for a year.

Hamilton said he resigned from ASU on good terms with coach Todd Graham.

"That year really helped me grow as a person," Hamilton said. "I had a great relationship with Coach Graham. It made me a better coach and a better person."

Hamilton will be the only football coach working on campus next school year. That will be huge, because Chaparral didn't have a single on campus-coach last season, and it hasn't had an on-campus head coach since David Huffine, who left to become athletic director at Scottsdale Coronado in 2014.

Hamilton will work in the physical education department.

"As much as I'm excited to have Conrad back as a coach, I'm even more excited that he will be on campus," Eubanks said.