The Copperas Cove Independent School District held a special board meeting Friday afternoon and unanimously approved the hiring of Jack Alvarez as the new athletic director and head football coach.

“It feels good, it feels right,” Alvarez said after the meeting. “I feel confident and I have confidence in the people who have hired me.”

With 20 years of experience as a head coach, a record of winning championships with repeated playoff appearances and an overall record of 165-74, Copperas Cove ISD had plenty to like about Alvarez as they quickly met for a closed session before approving the hire.

After being named head football coach at Ennis in 2011, Alvarez led the Lions to four district championships. Ennis also made six playoff appearances in the last seven years, winning the 5A Division II state title in 2014.

Prior to leading the Lions, Alvarez was the head coach at Kirbyville, beginning in 2000. He took over a team with a 25-game losing streak. Three years later, the Wildcats clinched their first playoff berth in 14 years.

In his 11 years with Kirbyville, Alvarez led the team to multiple deep playoff runs, district championships and two state title appearances.

“I’ve never taken a program that’s been completely on top,” he said. “I’ve always been fortunate to have great kids and great community support.”

Alvarez started his coaching career in 1998 as head coach at West Sabine and led the Tigers to a 7-4 record and their first playoff appearance since 1991.

Originally from Arkansas, Alvarez played collegiately at Henderson State University where he was an all-conference offensive lineman and graduated in 1988 with a bachelor of science degree in education.

“I’m very passionate about the game,” Alvarez said. “We kind of live around my house with the three F’s — faith. family and football.

“You have to keep those things in order or else your life isn’t going to be straight.

“That’s truly why I believe we’re here.”

Copperas Cove ISD accepted the retirement of former AD/head coach Jack Welch in late April, and Alvarez admitted the hiring process was quick.

“Job just came open, word of mouth, next thing you know it’s two weeks later since the job popped open,” he explained, laughing at the thought of it all, “and here we stand.

“It was not really in my plans, but never tell God your plans, He’ll surprise you every time. I feel like we’ve been placed here and I’m just excited to get started.”

Knowing that spring football was cancelled for the Bulldawgs, Alvarez is ready to get going.

“Hopefully, I can get in with the kids before long, we didn’t really negotiate when my first day is,” he said about what happens next. “Get in, meet the kids, maybe get to have some meeting with some kids, showing them the plans.”

He said he hasn’t given much thought to hiring his coaching staff yet as he was waiting for the board meeting to happen “but I am working on that, though.”

After studying film of the players prior to the application and interview process, Alvarez has his eyes set on the season ahead.

“I would love to take them deep in the playoffs,” he said. “I like to think my team usually gives great effort, great attitudes and play tough.

“If they do that, with the athletic ability that they have, I feel like they’ll have a chance to make a deep run.”

fcardenas@kdhnews.com | 254-501-7562

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