MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

July 24, 2013

Hiring of MHS wrestling coach put on hold

By Mike Kays
Phoenix Sports Editor

— The job of head wrestling coach at Muskogee High is still open as the board tabled the vacancy in its Tuesday morning meeting.

Dan Jefferson, the current associate head coach was interviewed Monday. Superintendent Mike Garde said there were still matters of further reference review involving current candidates. There were five total applicants. Two were from Oklahoma.

That includes Jefferson, whose interview came amid a protest at the BEST Center from a crowd ranging between 15 and 20 people carrying placards objecting to the removal of athletic director Bobby Jefferson as the program’s coach by the board earlier this summer.

Garde said the position would remain posted until filled, which leaves open the possibility that additional applicants might come into the picture. Wrestling season doesn’t start until November, but the school year gets underway Aug. 15.

Coaching stipends for all positions in MPS were approved during Tuesday’s meeting.

Terrye Dobbins, who organized Monday’s protest, said the lack of applicants from inside the state was due to “respect for what the Jeffersons have done for the Muskogee program and the wrestlers.” Dobbins, who said the group was also there to support Dan Jefferson, is the sister of Bobby Jefferson.

Many of those present Monday were former wrestlers. Jenks assistant wrestling coach Jim Shields was also among those present for the protest.

There was no such assembly present for Tuesday’s meeting.