(Lubbock) - Lubbock ISD announced the acquisition of head football coaches/athletic coordinators for Lubbock High School and Coronado High School at a meeting of the Board of Trustees today. Jason Strunk, currently an offensive assistant coach at Purdue University, was named to the position at Lubbock High School and Kent Jackson, head football coach and campus coordinator in Frisco, was tapped for the job at Coronado. According to Mark Ball, executive director of athletics, there were almost 200 applicants for the two positions from across the U. S. Ball said, "I attacked this process like a playoff game. I looked nationwide and left no stone unturned to find the right fit for each of these programs."
Jackson brings 25 years of coaching experience and 14 years as an athletic director to the coaching staff at Coronado. His overall record as a head football coach is 126-63-1. A 1986 graduate of Lubbock Christian University, Jackson grew up in Seminole. He coached in Sweetwater where his teams advanced between two and five levels of the playoffs all eight seasons, including three trips to the state quarter-finals. He also coached football in Olney and Roby in addition to leading Odessa High School to the 5A state championship in track. Named Coach of the Year ten times during his career, he is currently the head coach at Heritage High School in Frisco, a suburban district north of Dallas.
Strunk joined the staff at Purdue University in 2010 as the quality control coach for offense, after an impressive turnaround of the football program at Plant City High School in Plant City, Florida. ESPN credited Strunk with moving the Florida program to a state play-off qualifier and their first winning season in a decade. He was the Western Conference Coach of the Year in Florida and won national attention on CBS Sports and ESPN for his success in just two years at Plant City. Strunk has also been an assistant coach at Muhlenberg College in Pennsylvania and two high schools in Pennsylvania. At 34 years old, Strunk is described as energetic and innovative. He is a Cum Laude graduate of East Stroudsburg University with a degree in Special Education and English.
Dr. Karen Garza, superintendent, credited Athletic Director Mark Ball and the committee for presenting such a strong slate of candidates. "I am thrilled to bring the level of quality and expertise exhibited by these gentlemen to the Lubbock High and Coronado programs. We anticipate phenomenal success as a result of their leadership, and most important, a very positive impact on the lives of student athletes.
Coach Jackson is married and has two teenage sons. Coach Strunk is married with two children, a nine-year-old son and 17-month-old daughter.
Remarks by Exec. Director of Athletics Mark Ball at the board meeting:
"I want to begin by thanking Dr. Garza, the board of trustees, and our community for their support. The level of commitment they have shown had a direct influence on the quality of applicants related to this job. I want to thank my office staff and assistants, Rick Rodriquez and his staff in human resources, and Nancy Sharp and community relations. In addition I want to thank our interview committee and our local media for your help and cooperation.
The reason we are doing this simultaneously today is because I want both communities to know you are important to me. I attacked this like a playoff game, looked nationwide and left no stone unturned to find the right fit for each of your programs.
I describe Kent Jackson the new coach at Coronado with these words, integrity, high character, tireless worker, enthusiastic leader, passionate and caring. He is the total package.
Even though Jason Strunk has no experience coaching high school football in the state of Texas he is the right fit for this job. I use these words to describe Jason; high- high- high energy, relentless worker, passionate, builder, concerned. He knows where he wants to go and has a plan to get there.
Both of these guys have great families.
The Jackson family lead by Elizabeth, with teenage sons Trenton and Randall
The Strunks anchored by Tracy with son Mac (9) and daughter Kennedy 17 mos.
Coach Jackson has a long record of winning and playoff success. In sixteen seasons as a head coach his teams were in the playoffs 11 times including trips to the semifinals.
Coach Strunk got his start in Pennsylvania considered by many the best high school football in the nation next to Texas. As a head coach in Florida he and his teams received state and national recognition.
He has flipped programs in Pennsylvania and Florida in addition to coaching in the Big Ten Conference this past season.
Their personal stories are both inspiring and impressive and I am glad they are here in Lubbock."