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Page: Black Years

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John C. (Cam) Black, is a 1986 graduate of Hawkinsville High School.  He played high school football under Coach Jeff Caldwell.  Cam actually is a second generation Red Devil -- his late father, John, played football for the Red Devils' under Coach Bobby Gentry on the great teams of the early 1950s as a backup running back to the legendary 'Crow' Crenshaw.  He also played defensive back.  He has a brother, Todd.  Cam and his very lovely wife Amy, who is a Guidance Counselor at the high school, are parents to three wonderful children -- Nate who is 7 years old, John Thomas who is 10, and Aaron who is 16 and the returning starting quarterback for the 2008 Red Devils.  This is actually Cam's "third job" with the Red Devils.  He was a young assistant in the mid 1990s working as a position coach.  He later joined his high school teammate, Lee Campbell, at Montgomery County.  He came back to Hawkinsville with Lee in 1999 to take over the Devils defense and has held that position since that time.  With Coach Campbell's departure to Dodge County, the BOE moved wisely and quickly to name Cam as the head coach. 


Coach Black is well known across the state for his work with the state weightlifting meets.  He has helped organize several of them and has received awards for his work.  He was instrumental in having Hawkinsville host the state meet a few years ago when two of the participants were future UGA Bulldogs Thomas Brown and fullback Brannan Southerland.  The meet attracts some of the finest athletes across the state of Georgia.  Below the photo of Coach Black are the highlights of our conversation regarding Red Devil football and his coaching philosophy.

A few minutes with Coach Black:

·         How is the staff shaping up? "I hope to have the staff completed by the March BOE meeting or at least by the April meeting.  I am looking to bring on an offensive coordinator.  Most of the staff is staying. There is a chance we may need more but I don't know for sure at this time."

·         What is your offensive philosophy? "We will run out of the multi-I.  I believe that you have to run the ball.  We will also spread it out.  Down and distance will not determine what we do."

·         Are you going to play the same style of defense? "Yes.  I will probably tutor one of our coaches to eventually take over the defense."

·         What are you most excited about? "It is the challenge.  It is easy as an assistant to tell the head coach to do this or do that -- but when you are where the buck stops it is different.  But I like the challenge"

·         What have you learned from Coach Campbell during your years together? "Lee taught me the importance of taking every opportunity to be prepared in all phases of the game on Friday night.  People speak of halftime adjustments but you win by being prepared before the game starts."

·         Will there be any significant changes? "I am starting what we are calling the 'Winning with Character' program.  We will start it in football and hope to spread it throughout the entire athletic program.  We want to emphasize and insist that our players have good character.  I am also going to encourage them to become involved more heavily in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes." (Note: Just sitting with Coach Black you could sense in his voice this is very important to him)

·         Tell me when spring practice starts? "We will start April 28th and have our spring scrimmage on May 8th after school."

Coach Black is excited about the future of Red Devil football and how the players have responded to the coaching change.  When asked if there were players coming up from the 8th grade who could help he smiled and said "oh yeeeaah!"


If you should see Coach Black around town stop for a few seconds and give him some words of encouragement.  He emphasizes the team concept and it is important as fans that we let him know we are proud for him and wish he and the entire Red Devil athletic program nothing but the best.






















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