Stanley Smith named Ferriday football coach

Published 7:13 pm Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Ferriday High School hired Stanley Smith as head football coach Tuesday.

Smith is a 2001 graduate of Ferriday and played on the defensive line and as a middle linebacker for the Trojans.

“My heart was always in Ferriday,” Smith said. “There are a whole lot of emotions right now. I’m really excited.”

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After graduating from Ferriday, Smith went on to play middle linebacker at the University of Louisiana Lafayette from 2001-04.

Smith is currently the defensive coordinator at Franklin Parish, and said he will finish out the year there. He plans to commute to Ferriday every day after school to work with the Trojans during spring practice and conditioning. He said he anticipates his first full day in Ferriday to be sometime at the end of April.

“It kind of all just worked out,” Smith said. “I’m actually home now. I can’t wait to get started.”

Smith played professional football in the Arena Football League from 2006-09, playing on various teams including the Amarillo Dusters, Texas Copperheads, Rio Grande Valley Dorados, Iowa Barnstormers and Utah Blaze.

“We feel like he will be a great fit, not only getting our kids to succeed with football, but also to further their education,” Ferriday Principal Joyce Russ said.

“It took me through 42 different states,” Smith added about the experience. “I want to teach the kids that football is an avenue for life. I made an example of it, and I want to be able to pass that on.”

Smith started his coaching career in 2010, serving as the defensive coordinator at Ferriday. His fiancé, Raven, also graduated from Ferriday.

“I bleed black and gold,” he said. “The Miss-Lou means a lot to me.”

From there, Smith moved on to coach at Carol and Grant High School, coaching both defensive line and linebackers until 2013.

He then coached the next season at Louisiana College as the defensive line coach, and moved to coach Division I at Arkansas-Pine Bluff for the 2015-16 year.

“Since he has worked on a college level, he will be able to pull from those people,” Russ said.

Smith said the decision to come back home was in order to raise his two daughters, Madison, 11, and Skye, 6 months, and eventually set a date for the wedding.

“The time spent with college is a little more demanding,” Smith said. “I didn’t want to be selfish. I have family in the area, and I’m hoping to just hit the ground running. It’s amazing.”

Ferriday’s spring game is scheduled against Forest on May 13 at Mississippi College.