The Dunwoody football coach fired on Feb. 3 because the school “decided to go in a different direction,” said he will contact an attorney to seek legal advice regarding his termination.
Mike Youngblood was relieved of his coaching duties after leading the Wildcats to a 7-5 record in 2009 in his first season as a head coach. Dunwoody is the sixth public high school among 20 in DeKalb County to be in the market for a head coach since the end of the 2009 football season.
“It caught me by surprise,” Youngblood said. “The principal (Dr. Kevin Harris) called me into his office, and I was told I was relieved of my coaching duties. He told me they wanted to head in a different direction.”
Youngblood confirmed reports that he was written up for insubordination following an incident at halftime of Dunwoody’s homecoming football game against Cedar Grove last season. Harris entered the locker room at halftime and directed several players to leave a team meeting to participate in halftime activities, he said.
Youngblood said he asked Harris not to pull the players out of the meeting because it was a close game. The two went outside to talk, then the players left the meeting for the halftime activities.
The relationship between the two men was not the same after that, Youngblood said in the report.
“I’m going to get legal advice before I say anything else about it,” Youngblood said. “I don’t even know why I was fired.”
Prior to coming to Dunwoody, Youngblood served as associate head coach at Tucker during the 2008 season when the Tigers won the Class AAA state championship. He also had been defensive coordinator at Chattahoochee for the previous two years.
Of the six schools that have had coaching vacancies, including Dunwoody, only one spot has been filled so far.
Redan High School graduate Clinton Lawrence Jr. has been hired by his alma mater to replace Ronnie Fleetwood, who stepped down after the 2009 season for medical reasons.
Lawrence comes to Redan after serving as the offensive line coach at Banneker in south Fulton County. He also was chairman of the Health and Physical Education Department. This is Lawrence’s first head football coaching job.
In addition to Dunwoody, there are vacancies at ML King and Chamblee, and interim coaches are in place at Lithonia and McNair.
ML King is looking to replace Corey Jarvis, who left to take the head football coach job at Duluth in Gwinnett County. Chamblee is searching for a replacement for Mike Collins, who left to take the head coaching job at Wheeler in Cobb County.
Athletic liaison John April served as interim head coach at McNair after Roderick Moore was fired prior to the season. Also, assistant coach Marcus Jelks is interim head coach at Lithonia after head coach Earl White was fired in the middle of the season.