After surviving his first year as Carlisle’s high school principal last year, Brad Horn is a rookie again in 2014-15 as the school’s athletic director.
Horn, 43, officially began his added duties July 1, replacing the departed Brandon Barbaree, who was head football coach and AD.
“I’m excited about it,” said Horn, a Navy veteran who taught for 14 years at his alma mater, Cabot (fifth through eighth grade science and Introductory Engineering classes for grades nine through 12), before making the move to administration last year. “I had worked with most of the coaches as principal last year; most of the staff is intact. I knew and appreciate their willingness to do what they have to do. I had no apprehension in taking this position.”
His football career ended in junior high, and he had some experience as a volunteer coach, but it’s not the typical background for an AD.
“The main thing is having somebody in that position who is not partial to any one sport,” Horn said.
Carlisle has six coaches for junior and senior teams in golf, football, basketball, baseball and softball. Jack Keith is head football and assistant baseball; Joey Nelson is assistant football and head baseball; Blake Dorsey is assistant football and head boys track; Lonnie Roberson is assistant football and head softball; Jonathan Buffalo is head girls basketball and track; and Chris Houser is head boys basketball, track and golf.
Cheer and dance are also under the AD; Lindsey Thaxton is high school cheer coach; LeAnn Brazeal is high school dance coach and Melanie Brown is junior high cheer. All also teach.
“I want to give the coaches all the credit — they bust their tails working hard for Carlisle,” Horn said.
Keith, who moved up from an assistant football position to replace Barbaree as head coach, said Horn did a good job in his first year as principal and that he expected the same for the new position.
“That’s a lot on one guy’s plate, especially after his first year as principal, but he’s done well so far,” Keith said. “I can tell he’s got our backs as coaches. It makes life a lot easier when you know whatever decision you make, he’ll back you up.”
Horn said he would delegate many of the athletic duties to the coaches.
“My main responsibility is making sure the students and coaches are taken care of,” he said. “I also make sure we’re in compliance with the (Arkansas Activities Association).
“I had a learning curve last year as principal, and now I’ll have another one as AD.”