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Hooten's Arkansas Football names 188th Fighter Wing's Jones Class 2A Coach of the Year

  • Published
  • By Capt. Heath Allen
  • 188th Fighter Wing Public Affairs Officer
Sports can provide early life lessons that foster teamwork, leadership and morale. Those experiences are many times the springboard to successful careers and vital roles in the progression of society.

The coaches who spend countless hours toiling to make those early experiences positive ones were honored for their labor at the sixth annual State Farm Awards, the state's largest high school football award program.

The 188th Fighter Wing's Tech Sgt. Josh Jones, who is the head football coach at Magazine High, was named the Class 2A Coach of the Year during a banquet in Little Rock Dec. 15.

"I was one of three finalists so I thought I had a shot," Jones said. "But I was still surprised when they called my name. It's a tremendous honor. I've tried to take a lot of the lessons about hard work, dedication and attention to detail that I've learned during my time at the 188th and apply them to coaching. I'd like to think those lessons paid off."

The ceremony honored Arkansas' top high school offensive player, defensive player and coach of the year for each classification. The staff at Hooten's Arkansas Football selected three finalists and the winner for each category. Jonesboro High lineman Tyler Fincher was named the Arkansas Air Guard Scholar Athlete of the Year.

Jones, 34, is a photographer, graphics specialist and videographer for the 188th's Public Affairs Office. Jones, who has been in the 188th for 14 years, led the Magazine Rattlers to their most successful season in school history.

Jones built upon historic output in the previous campaign in which the Rattles went 7-4. Those seven victories marked a school-record for single-season wins and helped Magazine net a third-place finish in the 4-2A Conference and the school hosted its first-ever home playoff game.

Jones' Rattlers won a school-record 11 games in 2009 and earned the school's first-ever conference championship and playoff victory. Jones' squad won three playoff games before bowing out in the Class 2A semifinals to eventual state champion Junction City.

Jones' club set school records in total points with 506 and points per game with 36.1. The Rattlers also set new single-season school marks in individual and team passing yards, touchdown passes, total offense, defensive interceptions (16), individual receptions (43), individual receiving yards, individual receptions and individual tackles (143).

Magazine's 55-0 win over Two Rivers in the first round of the postseason was its first playoff victory and also set the school mark for most points scored in a single game.

Jones, a graduate of Arkansas Tech, earned his first coaching position as an assistant at Bald Knob with help from Randy Byrd, a retired master sergeant with the 188th. Byrd, who is now the Berryville School District Superintendent, was then an assistant principal at Bald Knob.

Jones' father, Dennis Jones, was a member of the Army National Guard for 33 years, serving in Vietnam, Operation Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Jones also earned the Fort Smith Radio Group's Frank Vines Coach of the Year accolade at a ceremony held in Fort Smith Dec. 7.

Hooten's Arkansas Football names 188th Fighter Wing's Jones Class 2A Coach of the Year

  • Published
  • By Capt. Heath Allen
  • 188th Fighter Wing Public Affairs Officer
Sports can provide early life lessons that foster teamwork, leadership and morale. Those experiences are many times the springboard to successful careers and vital roles in the progression of society.

The coaches who spend countless hours toiling to make those early experiences positive ones were honored for their labor at the sixth annual State Farm Awards, the state's largest high school football award program.

The 188th Fighter Wing's Tech Sgt. Josh Jones, who is the head football coach at Magazine High, was named the Class 2A Coach of the Year during a banquet in Little Rock Dec. 15.

"I was one of three finalists so I thought I had a shot," Jones said. "But I was still surprised when they called my name. It's a tremendous honor. I've tried to take a lot of the lessons about hard work, dedication and attention to detail that I've learned during my time at the 188th and apply them to coaching. I'd like to think those lessons paid off."

The ceremony honored Arkansas' top high school offensive player, defensive player and coach of the year for each classification. The staff at Hooten's Arkansas Football selected three finalists and the winner for each category. Jonesboro High lineman Tyler Fincher was named the Arkansas Air Guard Scholar Athlete of the Year.

Jones, 34, is a photographer, graphics specialist and videographer for the 188th's Public Affairs Office. Jones, who has been in the 188th for 14 years, led the Magazine Rattlers to their most successful season in school history.

Jones built upon historic output in the previous campaign in which the Rattles went 7-4. Those seven victories marked a school-record for single-season wins and helped Magazine net a third-place finish in the 4-2A Conference and the school hosted its first-ever home playoff game.

Jones' Rattlers won a school-record 11 games in 2009 and earned the school's first-ever conference championship and playoff victory. Jones' squad won three playoff games before bowing out in the Class 2A semifinals to eventual state champion Junction City.

Jones' club set school records in total points with 506 and points per game with 36.1. The Rattlers also set new single-season school marks in individual and team passing yards, touchdown passes, total offense, defensive interceptions (16), individual receptions (43), individual receiving yards, individual receptions and individual tackles (143).

Magazine's 55-0 win over Two Rivers in the first round of the postseason was its first playoff victory and also set the school mark for most points scored in a single game.

Jones, a graduate of Arkansas Tech, earned his first coaching position as an assistant at Bald Knob with help from Randy Byrd, a retired master sergeant with the 188th. Byrd, who is now the Berryville School District Superintendent, was then an assistant principal at Bald Knob.

Jones' father, Dennis Jones, was a member of the Army National Guard for 33 years, serving in Vietnam, Operation Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Jones also earned the Fort Smith Radio Group's Frank Vines Coach of the Year accolade at a ceremony held in Fort Smith Dec. 7.