Jason Duram takes the field as head coach


Brianna Moynihan, Sports editor

Jason Duram stands in the endzone with his arms folded, nodding in approval. He looks onto the field with pride in his eyes. Despite the summer heat the players practice their hardest to prepare for the looming Fruitport game. The first game that Duram will take the field under the new title of head coach.

Coach Duram takes the helm after former head football coach Mike Farley stepped down this past May after eight years of coaching. Although this may seem like a big change, new Athletic Director Scott Robertson assures that Duram’s sense of stability and character will make the transition easier on the program, players and community.

“He has been apart of the program for a number of years,” Robertson said. “I think he’d be the first to say that it’s been a change but not a dramatic change.”

While the transition from one head coach to another may not seem so significant to some, two coaches never have the same training style.

“ I think every head coach brings with them their own unique characteristics and their own ideas and different philosophies,” Duram said. “There’s some philosophies that coach Farley and I shared and there’s some I would say we have differences on.”

These differences have developed into changes, according to Duram, a more power-based offense and running a 3-4  base defense will be seen on the field.

“In many aspects we have tweaked things, and in some situations we have completely overhauled things,” Duram said. “There’s going to be a number of changes.”

Out of everything that is different about this football season one of the most notable is the community atmosphere Duram has been working hard to create.

“We have a new motto this year and that is together,” Duram said. “Together as in the entire school and the entire community.”

Along with the ‘together’ slogan for the season, Duram has applied a new notion to the student section that he based off of a Texas A&M tradition.

“A new motto for this year, and will be as long as I am head coach, is the 12th Buc. The whole concept is really that the students are going to be the 12th person on the field for us. They are going to make the noise, show up early, they are going to be loud and excited,” Duram said. “We just want to bring a force with us and make Grand Haven the best student section in the state of Michigan.”

This doctrine is already popular among the players. It has brought the football community closer and has allowed older players to get to know younger. According to VanHoef on and off the field the 12th Buc strengthens the program.

“I believe it will transition into more wins, and even if it doesn’t I am enjoying this season most of all out all four of my years,” VanHoef said. “You know the drills are the same, the hours are the same, but they seem to go by faster.”

Though Duram has high hopes for the fans he has set realistic goals for his team on the field.

“We want to do something that’s never been done here before, and that is to go out and win a district championship,” Duram said.

Duram’s expectations are simple:

“Great character in the classroom, on the field, at home and to represent Grand Haven high school correctly,” Duram said. “We feel like if we do those four things we can’t possibly not have success.”

Duram plans to remain head coach for 20 plus years.

“I love the game of football, I love coaching and I have a great group of guys I get to work with every single day,” Duram said. “This is a long term deal for me.