The Bridge City Independent School District Board of Trustees didn’t have to go far to choose their new head football coach and athletic director.

Allen Deshazo, defensive coordinator for the Cardinals, was chosen unanimously as athletic director and head football coach at a special school board meeting Thursday night. Trustee Mark Anderson summed it up by saying the board was very, very excited to have Deshazo for the new post.

Deshazo, likewise, said it was great to be named to the post.

“We live here. I have a relationship with the kids. I want to see through what we’ve started,” he said. “They’re hard working kids. We’re going to put a stamp of our own on things.”

Deshazo, 37, has been coaching for 16 years. In addition to football, he was also head coach for boys’ track and field. He started with Hardin-Jefferson ISD from 2002-2005, Bridge City from 2005-2008, Little Cypress-Mauriceville CISD from 2008-2013, back to HJ from 2013–2015 and back to Bridge City from 2015-2018. He graduated from Vidor High School in 1998.

“Sometimes it’s seems I started coaching yesterday; sometimes it seems like a million years ago,” he said.

The Cardinals will continue to run the Slot-T offense. Deshazo added as a defensive guy, he loves that offense. He anticipates replacing a few coaches on staff, but not a major turnover.

“We want to get quality people in there,” he said.

The Cardinals’ district has also been realigned with the addition of teams such as Lumberton and Livingston.

“It’s never easy. It’s a battle every week,” Deshazo said.

In fact, some other district opponents include Diboll, Anahuac, West Orange-Stark, Jasper and Silsbee.

Deshazo wants his players to be physically and mentally tough and play a brand of hard nose football in order to be successful.

He replaces Dwayne DuBois as head coach and athletic director. DuBois was hired three years ago from Hardin-Jefferson High School and compiled a 17-14 record. He announced in late April he would be leaving Bridge City and returning to HJ.

Deshazo knew he would apply for the head coaching job as soon as DuBois left.

Deshazo said what he will take away from DuBois was his relationship with his players.

“He loved those kids,” Deshazo said.

In addition to DuBois being a positive influence in his career, other coaches who stood out are Jeff Mathews of Vidor, Randy Crouse of LCM and Claude Tarver of Bridge City.

Putting on his athletic director hat, he said he knows every coach at the school runs a good program and though he’s not involved in everything, in a way he is involved in everything as AD to keep that success going.

For instance, his wife, Jamie, is head coach of the girls’ track and field team. She’s been successful at that and he wants to see that continue.