Bill Conides is going back to his coaching roots in a way.
It was announced Monday that St. Stanislaus’ head football coach has accepted the head coach and athletic director positions at Denham Springs, a Class 5A program in Louisiana.
“When I started the process, I hoped to find someone that possessed head-coaching experience, along with the energy to re-ignite the fire within this program and community,” Denham Springs High principal Kelly Jones said in a press release. “I am confident that Coach Conides possesses the attributes necessary to make Friday nights exciting in our community once again.”
With Conides as head coach, SSC won 13, 11 and 10 games the last three years. The Rockachaws were Class 4A South State Champs in ’14 and ’15 but were upset in the second round at Mendenhall this season.
“It’s been a good ride. I’m sitting here trying to type up the actual release from my perspective and it’s tough,” said Conides, who was 34-8 in three seasons as head coach. “We have done so many good things. This senior class is 46-9. That’s incredible. ... It has been a really, really good run and I hope the lessons they have learned playing in this program are lessons they can take with them for the rest of their lives.”
Denham Springs has had its fair share of struggles in recent years, posting sub-.500 records in four of the last five seasons under long-time coach Dru Nettles.
During his time at St. Stanislaus, Conides was known as an offensive guru. One rival coach a year ago called him one of the best offensive minds he has come across in Mississippi high school football.
The current group of seniors at SSC is loaded with D1 potential.
Quarterback Myles Brennan worked his way through the Elite 11 competition last summer and is currently a LSU commit, although he has recently “re-opened” his recruitment. Tight ends Chase Rogers and Darius Pittman (Western Kentucky) are both headed to the next level, as is receiver Corbin Blanchard (Air Force). Rogers was previously a Tennessee commit but is now hearing from a number of schools, including Texas, LSU, Houston, Ole Miss and Mississippi State.
“I think what makes it tough is the kids and players. We have put so much time into building this program and it all goes back to the kids. The kids believed in us from Day 1,” Conides said. “They did everything they asked us to do and, to me, that’s what’s most difficult, leaving those guys behind. That being said, this senior class was in eighth grade when I came in, so we’re all kind of leaving together.”
Now Conides is headed back to Louisiana, where he said he “cut his teeth” as a coach.
Prior to landing in Mississippi, Conides served as the offensive coordinator at Bonnabel and was the offensive line coach at East St. John and Franklin Parish.
“Ultimately from a family perspective, it was just time to get back to Louisiana,” Conides said. “Louisiana is how I ended up getting down here in the first place.”
Before settling in at Denham Springs, Conides said he has one last bit of Rockachaw business. He said he plans to be in Orlando, Florida, on Jan. 1 to watch Brennan compete in the annual Under Armour All-America Game.