West Jessamine named its new head football coach last week — Yancey Marcum.
Marcum has deep roots in the community and West Jessamine football. He has been an assistant coach for the Colts for the past seven seasons and played for West during his high-school days.
Marcum, 31, served as the offensive coordinator during the 2012 season when the Colts’ run-heavy offense averaged 28 points a game and scored a season-high 55 against Woodford County in a 55-28 victory.
The West administration interviewed half a dozen applicants with various coaching backgrounds, but in the end, Marcum had everything West was looking for, principal Ed Jones said.
“We interviewed three people more than once,” Jones said of the process. “The one thing he also brought us was loyalty; he’s been an assistant under three different head coaches; he played here; and he brought us a passion for West High. He had a vision and a passion.”
West is coming off a 3-8 season, its second losing season in as many years. However, Jones said West was looking for more than just more wins — it was looking for a culture change.
The Colts hope Marcum develops the junior-varsity and middle-school programs as much as the varsity program.
“To me, a program is everything from the uniforms you wear to the way the coaches dress on the sideline to the way the players behave and act on the sideline,” Jones said. “That’s a program, and we feel we need a change. It’s not just about losing football games; it’s about changing an entire culture in a program, and we felt like Yancey gave us the answers we wanted to hear and because of his passion we think he will do all those things. He wants the same things we want.”
Marcum graduated from West in 2000 and went on to play football at Youngstown State. Following graduation from Youngstown in the spring of 2005, Marcum returned to West as an assistant coach that summer.
“I played here and love it here, and I really like the community and people here,” Marcum said. “When I had the opportunity to go to Youngstown State and be involved with that program and really be a part of one of the top-notch I-AA programs in the country ... I got to see what a really good program was and really how far behind, at that point, Kentucky high-school football was. I wanted to come back and it wasn’t really about being a head coach, but it was about coming back and helping the kids in the community and start coaching.”
Marcum said taking a head-coaching position was driven by the want to do more to influence young men’s lives.
“I felt that being a head coach, I could implement the systems and the control and help kids more than when I was an assistant,” he said.
Marcum said moving forward, he believes West can be competitive and win the district, which is one of the four goals he has set for the program. He also wants to see the program help the kids do well in the classroom and graduate; to help them be the best young men that they can be; and beat East Jessamine.
Marcum and his wife, Allison, have two children, 3-year-old Nola and 6-month old John Walker. He also works for his family catering business DaRae & Friends. Marcum played football and basketball during his time at West.
West Jessamine opens the season Aug. 23 against Covington Scott at the VisitNich.com Bowl at East Jessamine.