LELAND — Coach Ricardo Tigler is coming home for all the right reasons.
Tigler was recently announced as the head football coach of Leland High School.
Tigler was born and raised in Leland, and he spent the last four seasons as the head football coach at Ray Brooks High School. During that time, he led Ray Brooks to four straight state playoffs berth.
Coach Tigler said he loved his time at Ray Brooks, but in his heart he always felt that Leland was where he was supposed to be.
“Honestly, to me it came down to the vision that the administration had for this program,” Tigler said. “We have a bunch of tough, blue-collared kids who go to Leland, and I know that if we work hard we can get to where we need to be.”
Last season, Coach Tigler’s Ray Brooks team defeated Leland High School 56-0. It was another strong example of how Tigler was able to build a successful program at Ray Brooks despite having a limited roster.
“We were the second smallest school in the state of Mississippi, but we were able to make the playoffs all four of those years,” Tigler said. “Being able to win at a school with just 18 kids is tough, but we were able to be successful.”
While Tigler has only worked with his new Leland players for a few weeks, he said he has already seen some positive signs.
For example, Tigler said he expects players like Marcus Flower (defensive back, wide receiver) and Dylan Hampton (a 300-pound lineman with great athleticism) to have huge impacts on the Cubs next season.
“Our success is going to come down to how hard we work,” Coach Tigler said.
“I am a straight forward coach. I am a stickler for doing things the right way.”
Tigler graduated from Leland High School in 2006. He received his degree in history at the University of Southern Mississippi.
Before taking the head coaching job at Ray Brooks High School, he was an assistant at Leland High School for four years.