Southlake Carroll's Coaching Search Will Impact San Angelo Central
SOUTHLAKE, TX—The saga surrounding Hal Wasson’s departure from Southlake Carroll is finally over and its ripples stretch far and wide, even to San Angelo.
Wasson’s letter of resignation was accepted by Carroll ISD last night and the two parties agreed on a settlement where Carroll will pay the remaining $165,300.26 balance of his salary and give him a letter of reference. The Carroll ISD has a scheduled board meeting today and it’s expected Wasson will be formally dismissed at the meeting.
Wasson led the Dragons to a 5A Division I State Championship in 2011 and posted a 111-25 record during his 11 seasons at the helm.
The background of this saga began on Jan. 24 when Wasson was placed on administrative leave as the school district, led by Athletic Director and former Odessa Permian Head Coach Darren Allman, launched an internal investigation into the Dragon’s football program.
The investigation yielded a 28-page report that highlighted UIL infractions committed by Wasson and his staff. The report noted that, while under contract with other schools, coaches would work with Carroll players before they were officially a part of the program. Wasson and his staff also coached players in football specific drill during the off-season outside of the school day, held a sixth-grade football camp at the high school on UIL-prohibited dates while also receiving pay and held more camps inside Carroll’s attendance zone which were attended by students in their program.
These are some of the more major infractions you’ll see in the Texas high school ranks. But, much as Mac Engel of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram said, they aren’t exactly grounds for dismissal.
Along with Wasson’s departure, Carroll’s coaches for girl’s basketball and volleyball have both quit. The entire saga surrounding Southlake Carroll athletics seems to stem from Allman, who was hired to his post in 2015.
The Star-Telegram made the point that one or two coaches leaving is not unheard of, but three leaving around the same time points to a rift from higher up.
This rift between Allman and his coaches has started to turn the once fertile land of Southlake Carroll into a wasteland where the top coaches in the state don’t want to step foot in.
Wasson had built the Dragon football program into a statewide power and Texan staple like homemade Bar-B-Que.
Now top coaches don’t want to step foot into that program due to problems caused by Allman, according to the Star-Telegram.
That means one of two things will happen: 1. Carroll will see a downward trend in performance with a new coach or 2. A relatively young or unknown coach inherits the stellar program from Wasson and does well.
Let’s lean toward the former of the two thoughts.
Last week, I explained how San Angelo Central’s new district presented a golden opportunity for their football team and laid out their way-to-early 2018 playoff outlook.
If Central can win their sixth-straight district title, they would be at the top half of the 6A Division I bracket. Looking at last year’s Carroll team and District 5-6A where they reside, they’d be the safest bet to claim the top spot for Division I.
If the Bobcats and Dragons were to win their first two playoff games in that scenario, that would mean a meeting between the two school for the first time since 2014.
However, a dip in performance for Southlake Carroll, along with DeSoto waiting to hire a new coach and how their district shakes out come November, could a clearer path for Central to make a deep playoff run in 2018, assuming things shakeout similar to how they did in 2017.
Carroll's district is comprised of Denton Guyer, four Keller ISD schools and two Northwest ISD schools for the 2018-2020 realignment.