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Cooper to lead new era of Starr’s Mill football

Success is a constant for Starr’s Mill High football, and new head coach David Cooper expects that tradition to remain strong.

This fall, Cooper will become just the third head coach in the history of the Starr’s Mill football program. Mike Earwood was the first coach when the school opened in 1997, and Chad Phillips has held the role since Earwood’s retirement in 2009. With Phillips retiring, the reins now go to Cooper.

“I was drawn to the head coaching job because of the history of success, both academically and athletically, at Starr's Mill,” said Cooper. “It is a community that is dedicated to the success of their student-athletes.”

Cooper has roots locally, growing up in Fayetteville. He played football, basketball, and baseball at Fayette County High, graduating in 1999 and going on to play baseball at the University of North Georgia.

He’s taught for Fayette County Public Schools for 19 years, first for 9 years at Sandy Creek and the last 10 at Starr’s Mill. He was the head baseball coach and strength coach for the Patriots before serving as the strength coach and an assistant coach on the baseball and football staffs for the Panthers.

The Panthers are coming off a 10-4 season that saw them reach all the way to the state football semifinals. Cooper aims to keep that success going and hopes to retain most of the coaching staff.

“I have had the opportunity to coach under or with many great leaders and have learned from them what it takes to promote success for the student-athletes,” he said. “I believe that my ability to establish relationships with students, staff, community, and parents got me this job.”


Posted 4/22/2024