When the school bells ring in August, Gregg “Hoss” Armstrong, arguable one of Jacksonville High School's most popular coaches, will be beginning a new chapter in his life.
The Ohio native has decided to retire his whistle and dedicate his time to the two things in life he loves most — his wife, Chris, and teaching.
“My wife made the decision to retire next year and I was the oldest guy on the (coaching) staff, so after doing a lot of thinking, I decided to step away from coaching and devote my time to teaching — I love to teach more than coach — and spending time with my wife,” Armstrong said.
“I am grateful that Coach (Wayne) Coleman and Mrs. (Karen) Kubara (recently retired Jacksonville High School principal) were able to work things out to where I can teach.”
Armstrong first served on head football coach Steve Wells' coaching staff beginning in 2008. When Wells departed, Armstong headed off to Lake Dallas High School in the Metroplex, but he eagerly returned when Coleman was selected as head football coach four years ago.
“JISD is home to me,” Armstrong said. “I love this community and the students.”
Armstrong said that he will miss coaching, but that he plans on staying close to the athletics programs.
“I want to work with the student athletes and to be able to help them academically now,” Armstrong said. “I plan on being at the games and cheering the teams on while enjoying the game from the fan perspective.”
Armstrong, who served as a defensive assistant (linemen/outside linebackers) and head girl's powerlifting coach, said that he will also miss the day-to-day interaction with his peers.
“The Canadys (offensive coordinator Randall and defensive coordinator Kenny) are such good people,” Armstrong said. “Kenny has already told me if I see anything (from the stands) that would benefit the team, to not hesitate to come down (to the field) and tell him.”
Armstrong said that he plans on doing some fishing, hunting and golf in his spare time.
“Coaching requires working a lot of hours, so I am looking forward to being able to enjoy some of the things that I have missed doing,” Armstrong said.
Armstrong teaches in the AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) Program at Jacksonville High School and he also teaches special education students in the field of biology.