“South Paulding is a great opportunity,” he said last week. “There’s a solid foundation, the kids are eager and the community is anxious. Those are great ingredients.”
Koester, approved by the Paulding County Board of Education May 28, began his head coaching career in Oklahoma in 1985 and coached in Oklahoma and Texas until 1998.
He finally brought his head coaching talents to Georgia at Cherokee High School where he served for three seasons, 1998 to 2000, before moving to Lakeside in Evans County for the 2001 season.
In 2008 Koester became the head coach at South Cobb where he stayed through the 2012 season. Koester got the Eagles to the playoffs twice while he was there.
Questions have come up concerning Koester taking this position. He said he left South Cobb to be closer to his family, though this job would be even further away. To that, Koester said he and his wife are buying a house in Paulding County and are anxious to live in the community.
“That’s what we were missing from South Cobb,” Koester said.
With the South Paulding community being very involved with the team under former head coach Tim Glanton, the school wanted someone who would keep that tie strong. Koester stated community is one important element for him as well as he is very family-oriented.
Koester has four children, two grandchildren and two on the way who he said will be at most of the games. Koester’s wife, who he said has missed one game in 35 years, has already been invited to work with the team moms.
As far as the team goes, Koester said the goal is to be as successful as can be and his personal goal is to help them be successful.
“I feel like I make my contribution that way,” he said.
Koester was approved after spring practice but his coaching staff was able to speak to the efforts put forth by the team.
“It went well. We had new guys step up, some guys are still dependable and we still have guys that can become starters,” said assistant coach Jeffery Sloan.
Assistant coach Josh Carmichael said, “It was definitely a transition period and a lot of uncertainty but the kids still improved and that says a lot about them as a team.”