Tygard Era Begins At NJHS


By: Nick Hall

The Jackson County Board of Education made it official Monday, March 25, naming Chandler Tygard head football coach at North Jackson High School. Tygard replaces Mark Rose who stepped down at the end of this past season to accept the head coaching job at Russell County. Tygard, 33, spent last season heading up the most prolific offense in 5A as offensive coordinator at Madison Academy. The previous year, he served as offensive coordinator at Ravenwood High School in his hometown of Nashville. “At Ravenwood we went Oregon speed,” said Tygard. “We averaged 79 plays a game.” Before those two stops, Tygard spent seven years on staff at the University of Tennessee under the tutelage of Phil Fulmer, Lane Kiffin, John Chavis and Ed Orgeron to name a few. Kiffin tweeted about his support for Tygard’s hire on Tuesday. After his stint with Tennessee, Tygard spent one year as defensive line coach at the University of the Cumberlands followed by two years as wide receivers coach at Missouri Southern State University. From 2015-16, Tygard served as defensive coordinator at Notre Dame High School in Chattanooga. He and his wife Lauren lived in Bridgeport at that time and attended Bridgeport First Baptist Church. “My wife is from the area and we have a lot of family ties,” said Tygard. “But my awareness of the North Jackson football program goes back 10 years due to relationships with guys like Chris Jones and Phillip Lolly.” When asked about his coaching philosophy, Tygard said the following. “Most people think of me as an offensive guy, but in reality, I’ve only been on that side of the ball for three years. Whereas, I spent 12 years coaching defense.” As to his plans for the defense, Tygard said, “North Jackson already has a defensive identity which is big, strong, mean, physical dudes. I don’t plan on changing that. We’ll play hard-nosed football.” Offensively, Tygard says he’s adaptable to the cards he’s dealt. “I’m thought of as a hurry-up, no-huddle guy and that’s what I prefer. But I can go three tight ends, no tight ends or whatever it takes. I’ll run the Wing-T if that’s what it takes to win.” Tygard said his overall philosophy of the game is “default aggressive.” That appears to apply on offense and defense. “There’s a saying I like,” said Tygard. ‘ No risk it, no biscuit.’ We will be exciting to watch on both sides of the ball. When I was given my first offensive coordinator’s job, I thought about all the things gave me nightmares as a defensive coordinator and that’s what I installed. That’s why I like to go up-tempo with all the shifts and motions and run the trick plays. It’s exciting for the fans and obviously fun for the players.” Tygard said he is a modern coach on the field but old school off the field. “We will look good on the field. Our uniforms will be flashy, but every player will look the same. We will have a team identity and our locker room will be spotless.” Tygard said he respects the tradition of North Jackson football but wants to get the community involved and is looking forward to the future of the program as opposed to a “remember when” attitude. Tygard stated that spring football would be pushed back as late as possible due to the success of the baseball team with a spring game to be played sometime in May.