COMAL COUNTY, Texas – Larry Hill, Smithson Valley High School's head football coach, was inducted Wednesday into the Texas High School Coaches Association's Hall of Honor after a 23-year run with the school.
Hill said he initially had reservations about taking the head football coaching job 23 years ago, since the school was without a principal and had very little football tradition.
“My dad told me the school will hire a principal, the district will hire a superintendent and the football program will eventually take off," Hill said. "'You might as well be around when it does.' Those were the most important words anyone has ever spoken to me. My wife and I found our home at Smithson Valley.”
Hill's winning streak started soon after he took over as head coach. He led the Rangers to their first playoff appearance in 1994, and has taken the team to the postseason for 19 of the past 20 seasons.
Under Hill's coaching, the Rangers have gained nine State Quarterfinals, six State Semifinals and three State Championship games.
“I give so much credit to our players, several of whom are here today,” Hill said at his induction on Wednesday. “I’m so proud of how they represented our school on the playing field and of the young men, husbands and fathers they’ve become in our community. I also want all my assistant coaches who are here to stand up. I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. Without you, none of this would have been possible.”
Hill told the crowd he would be a Ranger for the rest of his days.
“I’m a Smithson Valley Ranger and will be when they put me in the pine box,” he said. “God decided to bless this old boy with all of these things. I’m so glad to accept this wonderful honor.”