Dora names Bart Lockhart new head football coach

Coach spent last two years at Sumiton Christian

By JOHNATHAN BENTLEY, Eagle Sports Editor
Posted 1/26/17

Bart Lockhart has been away from the Dora-Cordova football rivalry for the last two years.

He’s jumping back in for the 2017 season — as the Dora head football coach.

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Dora names Bart Lockhart new head football coach

Coach spent last two years at Sumiton Christian

Posted

Bart Lockhart has been away from the Dora-Cordova football rivalry for the last two years.

He’s jumping back in for the 2017 season — as the Dora head football coach.

The former Cordova High School quarterback and offensive coordinator was officially named the Bulldogs’ head coach at the Walker County Board of Education meeting on Thursday morning.

Lockhart, who replaces Mike Cain, spent the last two years as the Sumiton Christian head coach. In 2016, he led the Eagles to a 9-3 record and their first playoff win in 12 years.

“When I left Cordova (as offensive coordinator), I said it would take a really good opportunity for me to consider leaving. Then I had the opportunity to go to Sumiton Christian. It’s the same way now. It was a tough decision, but I’m ready for the challenge. Let’s see if we can get it done over there, too,” said the 31-year old Lockhart. “There is an opportunity at Dora — the opportunity to impact young men and the opportunity to win a lot of football games.”

Lately, Dora’s football tradition has taken a hit. The Bulldogs were 4-16 over the last two years under Cain and haven’t had a winning season since former coach Johnny Wright led Dora to a 12-2 mark and a spot in the state semifinals in 2012.

As for the rivalry game against Cordova, Dora has dropped two in a row in the series, including a 42-3 home loss last year.

“Cordova’s got the red hats and Dora’s got the gold hats. It’s always been a battle. We want to get the rivalry back to what it used to be,” said Lockhart, who will speak to his new team for the first time on Monday morning.

“We are very excited. After talking to Bart for the first time, I could tell his philosophy and goals are very similar to mine,” Dora Principal Paige Skalnik said.

There were more than 75 applicants for the job.

“We heard from people all over the Southeast. We talked to several candidates. Once the committee members heard what (Lockhart) had to say and what he had to offer, they were impressed. With his experience and success, he was the front runner,” Skalnik said. “It’s just a real honor to have a head coach the caliber of Bart Lockhart.”

Lockhart informed the Sumiton Christian team of his decision last Thursday.

“I didn’t want them to find out from anybody but me,” Lockhart said. “It’s the worst part of the job. The kids here are awesome. They bought into what we were selling. I had a great support system and (Sumiton Christian Principal Cheryl Capps) was on board. It took the whole community. This will always be a special place to me.”