Elks name Brent Ullery to succeed Roberts as football coach

Centerville High School reached back to its past in naming Brent Ullery interim football coach Wednesday. A 2003 Centerville graduate, Ullery is the son of former Elks coach Ron Ullery.

Brent Ullery succeeds Rodney Roberts, who unexpectedly resigned earlier this spring after three seasons. Ullery’s promotion from assistant coach is pending next week’s school board approval. Centerville athletic director Rob Dement said the interim status will remain for one year.

“I grew up in Centerville football and I am excited to lead the program at my alma mater,” Brent Ullery said in a release. “My desire to better the program is equal to my desire to positively impact the lives of the players as they grow into young men.”

That continues a turnover trend among Greater Western Ohio Conference football coaches. Ullery will be at least the fourth new coach this coming season, joining Greg Bonifay (Stebbins), Derek Hauk (West Carrollton) and Trace Smitherman (Xenia). GWOC coaches who made their debuts with new teams this past season were Chris Roark (Fairborn), Dave Miller (Fairmont) and Nathan Hyatt (Vandalia-Butler).

Ullery played at Centerville for his father from 1999-2002. He was a five-year walk-on at Ohio State University, earning one letter as a receiver. He initially began an assistant football coaching career at Centerville and then landed at Dublin Coffman before returning to Centerville’s coaching staff in 2014, Roberts’ first season with the Elks after he resigned at Franklin.

One of the area’s best big-school programs since the mid-1970s, Centerville was 5-5 last fall after an 0-2 start. It was the second straight season the Elks missed the Division I playoffs. Centerville was 10-1 under Roberts in 2014.

Brent Ullery becomes the fourth Centerville football coach since 1973, following Bob Gregg (1973-1999), Ron Ullery (2000-13) and Roberts. Ron Ullery has been an offensive line coach at Springboro since not being renewed as the Centerville coach.

“I am very excited to have Brent Ullery as our new head football coach,” Centerville athletic director Rob Dement said in a release. “I am confident that Brent will take the pieces that are currently working and combine those with the traditions that have made Centerville football such a great program. Brent also brings to the table a unique understanding of what ‘Elk Pride’ means to the great alumni of this program.”

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