Kovi Christiansen COY state title

Morgan head football coach Kovi Christiansen, center, poses with assistant coaches and the 3A state championship trophy after defeating Juab 8-0 on Nov. 15, 2019, in St. George.

MORGAN — The high school football coaching shuffle hit Davis County earlier this spring, resulting in new coaches at five prep programs.

The shuffle also went east to Morgan County, where the defending 3A state champions are.

Morgan High head coach Kovi Christiansen announced his retirement from coaching Thursday in a lengthy post on Facebook.

Christiansen has been the Trojans’ head coach since 2007, compiling a record of 108-45 with four region championships (2008, 2016-18), two state runners-up finishes (2015, 2017) and a state championship just this past fall, an 8-0 win against Juab at Dixie State.

As a result of guiding Morgan to the state title, Christiansen was named the 2019 Standard-Examiner All-Area Football Coach of the Year.

Coach of the Year: Kovi Christiansen credits 'great' group that led Morgan to state title

“I can’t put into words how much I have loved coaching in this community. The young people are better kids than you could find anywhere. I was blessed with an unbelievable staff for years that brought out my best,” Christiansen wrote in the Facebook the post. “Thank you to all who have done so much for me in my tenure here. With the heaviest of hearts I have retired as the head football coach. I have truly been blessed more than I deserve. Thank you all so much.”

MHS athletic director Kade Morrell said the school hopes to conduct interviews for Christiansen’s replacement early next week. Current assistant coaches are carrying on with offseason workouts and practices until a new head coach is in place.

The obvious concern is the timing of Christiansen’s retirement and the subsequent new hire.

A new head coach likely won’t be in place until late next week at the earliest, which would be nine weeks before the scheduled season opener against Bear River on Aug. 21.

The question now is whether Morgan wants to bring in a coach from the outside, who would ostensibly try to install new on-field schemes, or pick from the ranks of the Trojans’ assistant coaches, should any of them apply for the job.

The new coach will take the reins of one of the most successful football programs in the state.

Since the 2000 season, Morgan has a combined record of 161-72 with six region championships and the aforementioned state tournament success.

FORMER BOUNTIFUL COACH HIRED BY PATRIOTS

According to an ESPN report, former Bountiful High head coach Tyler Hughes was hired by the New England Patriots as a coaching assistant.

Hughes’ exact job duties with the Patriots are unclear as of the initial reports.

Hughes was Bountiful High’s head coach for the past two seasons before stepping down this winter. He has previously coached in the college ranks as a head coach at Minot State and Snow College, as well as a one-year stint at Ohio State as a quality control assistant under Urban Meyer.

You can reach prep sports reporter Patrick Carr via email at pcarr@standard.net. Follow him on Twitter @patrickcarr_ and on Facebook at facebook.com/patrickcarr17/.

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