I can hardly believe school starts in less than two weeks.
Students across Vernon Parish will get back to school on August 8, meaning lots of parents will be happy.
Fortunately, my children like going to school and are looking forward to what the year brings. I am excited as well because the beginning of school marks the end of a long summer drought of sports action.
On August 11, the Wampus Cats, Red Devils and Eagles can all get started with fall football practice. I don't know if they will be going through two-a-days like they do in Texas, but I know the players will be out in the heat of the day working out in preparation for the real deal, which is Sept. 5.
If you are a fan of local high school football, Sept. 5 is going to be a great day. All three of our local teams will be in action at home. Leesville will be hosting Jennings, while Pickering and Rosepine are taking on Mamou and Avoyelles, respectively.
Another thing about the beginning of a new school year is that there will be a number of new coaches around the local area.
For a fact, I know of a few names in new positions at several local schools.
Leesville High School is welcoming two new faces to the basketball program.
Well, technically, they aren't new faces, but new people in charge of restoring the school back to prominence on the hardwood.
Reggie DeGray, a Leesville graduate, will be returning to his roots, taking over a Wampus Cat program with some up and coming young talent.
On the girls' side, Robert Carter leaves Leesville Junior High, where he has had a successful run with the both the softball and boys' basketball program. He inherits a young team, but one with tremendous potential.
Let's travel down La. 8 to near the Texas line and hang a left. A few miles down the road, Evans High School will be welcoming two new coaches as well.
Alan Brown will be the new boys' basketball coach, while Deborah Lozano will take over the Lady Eagles.
Brown has the possibility of making a serious run at the playoffs with the likes of Elijah McClintock and Rico Garcia back for their senior year. Both are outstanding young athletes, with McClintock arguably one of the best in the parish.
Anacoco High School is also going to be the home of a new baseball coach.
Robbie Bainer left Simpson High School earlier this summer to become the head coach of the Anacoco baseball team. The team has a lot of youth and this gives Bainer a chance to build a program.
Anacoco will also bring in a new girls' basketball coach, but nobody has been hired yet. This person will also be expected to work with the softball program.
In Simpson, veteran Ron Roy will step out of the coaching realm as the Broncos bring in a new coach. Brad Schultz, who worked as an assistant for a couple of years under the guidance of Dobie Perkins at Oak Hill, steps into the world of Bronco baseball after a year in private business.
Hornbeck is bringing in a familiar face to its athletic program as Wilkie Richmond returns to the area. Richmond, who was the principal at Pleasant Hill last year, is expected to help with the basketball programs and in the spring with either softball or baseball.
Finally, Pitkin has a pair of new head coaches.
Dana Johnson Wisby, a former three-time all-stater for the Lady Tigers, takes over as the girls' basketball coach, while Brian Thompson returns as head coach of the baseball program.
In addition to the new head coaches, James Britt, who had been the assistant principal at Pitkin, will now be an assistant to veteran Danny Fletcher in basketball, along with joining Thompson on the diamond.
Finally, Rosepine will be bringing in a former head coach to assist Johnny Cryer and the Eagle football team.
Danny Smith, who coached at both Leesville and DeRidder, will be a defensive assistant this fall.
Welcome to all of my new coaches. I look forward to working with you and helping to promote our great athletes in Vernon Parish.

Daniel Green is the sports editor of the Leesville Daily Leader. He can be reached at 337-239-3444 or sportsleader@cebridge.net