TOMPKINSVILLE — Former Monroe County High School football head coach and current assistant John Petett was named the next head coach of the Falcons in a press conference on Monday afternoon.
Petett has over 20 years of coaching experience, and he is the winningest coach in Monroe County High School football history.
He takes over the reigns of the program after former head coach Billy Joe Murphy resigned in Dec. of 2019.
Petett’s last season as the head coach was in 2015. The Falcons finished that season with a 7-5 overall record. He is also the school’s current athletic director.
“The first thing I want to do is thank Coach Murphy for his four years of dedication to Monroe County High School football,” Petett said. “He has a strong foundation for us. This is sort of bittersweet for me. I’m glad and excited to take it over, but I was having fun being an assistant coach.”
“Sixteen years ago, I took this job,” Petett continued. “I didn’t know much as a head coach. Sixteen years later — here I stand, and I still don’t know much. But I do know this: I had great assistant coaches, and I had great players. I want to surround myself with that again. We will be successful.”
Monroe County High School Principal Melissa Emberton also provided a statement on the hiring of Petett: “He took a little time away for awhile, and we are really excited that he has taken the program back,” Emberton said. “We appreciate all the work he has put into it. We look forward to great things.”
Petett has been involved with football at Monroe County High for 29 out of the past 35 years since consolidation as either a head coach, player, or assistant coach. The decision to return to the helm was not an easy one for Petett.
“Any decision like this is tough,” Petett said. “We did post the job and do everything the correct way. We did go through multiple candidates, and it’s just one of those things that I have a lot invested in this program. If you would've told me four years ago that I would've been the head coach of Monroe County football again I would've told you that you were lying. It’s just something that I’m not scared of.”
Petett also said that he will be switching from calling plays on the defensive side of the football to the offensive side. He will be looking for a defensive coordinator on that side of the ball as Petett called the defense over the past couple of seasons.
Ironically enough, Pettet will now be coaching his son Jameson Petett who was a freshman last season for the Falcons.
“I’m not gonna give him any special treatment,” Petett said. “It’s probably going to be harder for him to play for me than it will be for me to coach him. It’s one of those things where we will leave it on the field. Hopefully he is productive for us.”
Moving forward, the first goal for Petett and the rest of the program will be to get the numbers of kids playing football back up in the school.
Just 38 players were on the roster last season which is a significantly lower number than the amount of players who played for Coach Pettet during his last tenure.
“I’m excited to get back to the grind of everything,” Petett said. “We want our players to have that desire to play football again. That’s what’s first and foremost. We are going to make football players out of them.”
After losing in the first round of the KHSAA playoffs in 2019 and fishing the season with a 5-6 record, the Falcons are set to take the field for the 2020 season on Aug. 28 against Woodford County in the Trojan Trail Turf War.