Cox said he instantly felt a connection at Franklin where he will have a teaching contract in the building. He said his daily commute distance is also reduced by about 15 miles.
“I think initially after meeting with their people you just get a great feel for the great tradition of success that Franklin has had in football,” Cox told WCPO, our news partner.
“You get their passion for where they want to see their sport go to. And then you’re humbled and honored that they feel like you’re that guy that’s going to take them there. There is some neat things coming down the road with a brand new high school and building improvements and all kinds of different things. And I think it’s a great time at this point to jump on the train. Their people have been nothing but awesome to deal with and talk to. I think there is a great, great foundation of success to build upon.”
Franklin, a Division III Region 12 program, had a 6-4 record in 2020.
Every participating Ohio high school football team was eligible for the postseason in 2020 due to the adjusted season during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Wildcats also had 12 previous playoff appearances including recent trips in 2019, 2017 and 2016.
Cox said he’s looking forward to joining the football tradition at the school.
“I value traditional success,” Cox said. “I just think once I met the principal (Kelli Fromm), Brian Bales the athletic director and (superintendent) Dr. (Michael) Sander and Rodney Roberts who is the business manager - you meet those people you feel that connection.”
Cox joined Talawanda December 2018 after he spent 21 seasons at Lakota West. He was also previously head coach at Bellbrook prior to Lakota West.
Cox led Talawanda to a 7-3 record in his first season with the Braves in 2019. Talawanda, a Division II, Region 8 program, started the 2019 season with a 4-0 record for the first time since 1991.
Talawanda was 3-5 in 2020, including a playoff win over Belmont. Talawanda captured also its first win over Harrison (Week 2) since 1995.
Talawanda had been 5-35 from 2015 to 2018 prior to Cox’s arrival.
Cox said he is most proud of how the Talawanda program believed it could succeed and how the team established a work ethic for success with the student-athletes.
“I’m really appreciative of how they accepted me,” Cox said. “I’m really appreciative of everything Talawanda has done for me here. To me, this was a unique challenge. This was a unique opportunity and one I wanted to take advantage of.”