Playoff Guarantee Highlights New John Tyler Coach's First Day - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

4/20/07

Playoff Guarantee Highlights New John Tyler Coach's First Day

As a defensive coordinator the past four years at John Tyler, Dereck Rush has seen the highs and lows of the program. Now as head coach, it's up to him to produce more of those highs then lows. He met with the media today and wasted little time putting the target squarely on him and the program.

"We will make the playoffs," Rush said.

With that guarantee, Rush began his tenure as head coach of the Lions. But he wasn't the only one making guarantees today.

"I just admire the fact that he stood by the program," John Tyler principal Dr. Michael McFarland said.  "He's worked with the kids and the kids love him and respect him and I guarantee there's going to be some good things that happen here at john tyler because of him."

How much good things happen at John Tyler will come down to how well the players respond to coach Rush, and what he calls, his relentless approach to the game.

"We're going to do whatever it takes to win football games and not accept losing as an option," Rush said.

It's hard not to believe him. After all, the Lions have made the playoffs two straight years, and promoting Rush from within, keeps things status quo.

"The kids are working hard in the offseason. We're going to continue doing the things we've been doing as far as running the same type of system offensively and defensively," Rush said.

Ultimately, Rush's legacy will probably rely on the quality of coaching staff he assembles around him, which he says is his number one goal in the coming weeks. Today, though, he was just enjoying the thought of being the man in charge in Cujo country.

"Words cannot express the way I feel," Rush said with a big smile on his face.  "When I first moved (to Texas) from mississippi, the coaches told me about Odessa Permian and John Tyler high school. That's when I first moved here, and I wanted to be a part of it, so it's something special. I'm going to cherish the moment and we're going to win some football games."

Coach Rush said spring practice will now start on may 7th, with their spring game on may 24th.

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