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Monday, May 2, 2016

Weir steps down as Greyhounds football coach, Curtis named as replacement

Monday, March 19, 2012

Salem Greyhounds Football Coach Sammy Weir has decided to retire, despite a 9-3 record this season and a nomination for 2A Coach of the Year. Weir (left) said, after a 34 year career, "It's time to turn it loose." Weir's Assistant, Cody Curtis, was named as Weir's replacement.
After leading his team to state tournament appearances twice in four years, Salem Greyhounds Football Coach Sammy Weir has decided to leave his coaching and teaching jobs in favor of retirement.

The Salem School Board accepted Weir's retirement request at a special meeting on Thursday, March 1. Junior High and Assistant Varsity Coach, Cody Curtis, was named to replace Weir.

"Coach Weir has years of experience in coaching, and had a lot of knowledge to share with his players and coaches," Superintendent Ken Rich said. "He is a great person and we will miss him."

Weir is leaving after a 9-3 season with a young team, which has a good stock of returning players, and the potential for a good year next year.

"Not really," Weir replied after being asked if he had been planning to retire. "I didn't really plan to retire but, after the season, I took a good long look at things, and decided this was the right time to move on," Weir told The News. "I've spent 34 years in coaching and now it's time to turn it loose."

Weir said he was happy to see his assistant coach was named as his replacement. "I am glad to see Cody get the opportunity. He has a lot of knowledge and a great work ethic," Weir said. "He works well with Defensive Co-ordinator, Seth Brazeal. I think I'm leaving the program in great hands."

Weir added he knew he was taking on a big challenge when he accepted the job as Greyhound's head coach in February of 2009. "Coaching is hard in small schools because of the limited number of players you have to work with," Weir said. "I tried to encourage as many kids as possible to get involved, and have had great support from the community."

Weir's 2009-2010 team made it to the state tournament. While his 2010-2011 team struggled, ending with a 1-11 record, Weir said the team never gave up and continued to receive strong support. He went into the 2011-2012 season with high hopes, since many of his players came from a Junior Varsity team which posted an undefeated record.

"It was a young team, but the guys worked hard over the summer to stay in shape, and I could see them getting bigger and stronger," Weir recalled. "Best of all, I saw great enthusiasm for the coming season and knew we would be successful."

The 2011 team finished the season 9-3, winning the second state tournament game in school history, before losing in the second round. In December, Weir was named a finalist for 2A Coach of the Year, a yearly Farm Bureau Award.

Weir said he expects the Greyhounds to be competitive next year. The big challenge will be to replace five starting linemen, who will graduate in May. But after a lifetime of football -- playing at Arkansas State and two years of pro-ball in the old American Football league, coaching high school teams in Florida and Arkansas, college level experience at ASU and Marshall, and serving as head coach at the University of Central Florida -- Weir is looking forward to having more time for non-football interests.

He and his wife intend to remain in Cherokee Village, where they have lived for a number of years. He plans to do some golfing and kayaking, work on a "honey do" list and be able to watch his grandson, a quarterback in Centerville, Ohio, play next fall.

Weir added he will also keep an eye on the Greyhounds. "I want to thank the community for its support -- especially the local physicians who do our team physicals for free and watch over our children," Weir said. "I can't say thank you enough to the people of Salem. It is a great community."

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