When Bobby Hall stepped down as the head coach at Biloxi High School on Feb. 20, he felt like he was leaving behind a community that didn't fully embrace football.
On Wednesday, Hall was hired as the head coach/athletic director at Philadelphia High School and he feels like he's landed a job in a town that lives for Friday nights during the fall.
“I just wanted to coach at a school where football is important,” Hall said Wednesday. “It's important in this community and in this school. I'm very grateful. The sky is the limit here and I'm really excited about it.”
The process to hire Hall at Philadelphia was a quick one.
“I interviewed this morning. They offered me the job around 11 a.m. and I accepted,” he said.
Hall left Biloxi following a contract dispute with school officials.
In three seasons at Biloxi, Hall finished 12-22. His best season came in 2016 when he led the Indians to a 6-6 record and a playoff bid. He is the state's second all-time winningest public schools coach with a career record of 310-105.
Katlan French, who was Hall's defensive coordinator, was hired in March to replace Hall at Biloxi.
Hall wasn't shy in offering criticism for Coast football when he decided to leave Biloxi.
“Down here (on the Coast), it’s like Conference USA or the Sun Belt,” he said in February. "It’s not the SEC West. It’s kind of mind-boggling to me that back in the 60s and 70s that the best high school football in the entire state of Mississippi was played on the Coast. Now, I’m not sure if it’s not the worst.”
The 63-year-old Hall will replace Teddy Dyess, who stepped down after 11 seasons in February to take the Magee job. Dyess made the postseason in all 11 seasons at Class 2A Philadelphia and had a record of 115-26.
“Teddy Dyess built a great program,” Hall said. “He did a lot of winning here. I'm just coming here to take it to another level.”
“As soon as it came open, it was a job I was interested in. I reached out to some connections that I had to see if I might be a candidate here. The rest is history. I'm very, very excited about the opportunity to be the AD and head coach. They have a rich and storied tradition. It's one of the real football towns in Mississippi.”