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         COACH  HARRISON

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  In Brief,

Coach Larry Harrison is a man of multiple talents, who has been coaching football for 35 years from upper youth travel leagues through  high school, where he has built instant winners every single place he has been. Harrison was an awarded athlete in his youth and high school, playing quarterback in football and second base in baseball and receiving honors in Football for Most valuable player, Outstanding Leadership award awarded by DeKalb County, and Columbia High School’s outstanding teenager award as a senior.

 Harrison remembers the great coaching he had received as a youth and contributes a lot of his success to those coaches including coach Phil Knight, his coach at Columbia High School in Decatur, GA.

Coach Larry Harrison is the Brother of All SEC Running Back, and Scholastic All-American, (Gliding) Glynn Harrison of University of Georgia fame from the mid 70’s. Larry was, and still is, his biggest fan.

Being a business owner and not a teacher, Most of Harrison's Varsity High School Coaching years came in the later half of his career beginning in the 90's when community coaching took root. Harrison was picked up by a local high school and was launched into a High School Football Difference Maker immediately, and more publically visible later in the Private School arena in the GISA.

Some of Coach Harrison’s highlight accomplishments include taking Nathanael Greene Academy, a very dismal football past history of 35 years, to 2 final fours and 1 State Championship game in his 3 years there. In 2004, Harrison found his NGA team playing for the GISA State Title in his very first high school head coaching venture. In 2008 Harrison was called for triage duty at The Heritage School in Newnan Where he took a brand new football Program, only two years old (Heritage 3-17 record) and coached them up to 2 playoff births with rosters of 22 and 21 men and posting two 6-4 winning seasons In the GISA's "AA" classification.

 Harrison’s offense is always at the very top of Georgia High schools in production, where in 2004 was THE #1 OFFENSE in the entire state of Georgia, all classifications included. Coach Harrison's uncanny ability to win where no other has, and win in the most challenging of situations over the years, has garnered him a long list of superlatives in describing his coaching abilities.

 Harrison says that his motivation and drive is the direct result of his devout love for the game and the kids. Harrison states: “God has blessed me greatly”.

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

Coach Harrison has made a career out of bringing teams from the bottom to very high competitive plateaus.  At Nathanael Greene Academy,  he presided over a program that achieve tremendous success under his watch from 2004 through 2006. Harrison came into the Nat-Greene family in March 2004 and with 16 players, 9 of them seniors,  he immediately began to talk about winning and winning big. Evidently, this appealed to the kids for they had never considered winning as something possible there. After a short meeting with players the first day of practice, the game was on. The kids at first, quite frankly, thought the coach had a screw loose, talking championships on the first day of meeting the 16 players.  He told them they would not only win, but would "win on our terms", and with the players that wanted it. With the dedication of those 9 seniors and a great new enthusiasm, The Patriots made it through an unbelievable season with a record  11-2, and only lost in the State Championship game with less than 2 minutes to play. The starting line up team average weight was 163.6 lbs. per man. While many schools are big into recruiting and scholarships to athletes, Coach Harrison had taken the kids that were present in the halls of the small Siloam Georgia school, well out matched in size and speed nearly every week, to a perennial prominence of  no less than the Final Four each year. Nat Greene had become among the very best football teams in the GISA Class "A" over those three years. NGA in it's 35 year previous history was rarely above the bottom of the region with one or two wins. For all this success, Coach Harrison gives all the credit to God and his grace, and the privilege to participate in this great sport and this gift of life, along with the great kids of Greene and surrounding Counties for all their hard work, belief, and courage. "What we saw these fine courageous young men do on Friday nights was quite amazing". 

  Coach Harrison concluded his third year at Nat-Greene as a 2004 Region Champion & State Runner-Up, 2005 State Semi-finalist, and 2006 State Semi-finalist.

After going to Columbia High School to help his friend Kevin Latham in 2007, Harrison was called by  a fledgling football program of only a 2 year existence at The Heritage School in Newnan. He took the job in much the same way he approached the kids at NGA. In Harrison's 2 seasons at Heritage, 2008 and 2009, the Hawks posted back to back winning seasons with 2 playoff births with very young and inexperienced teams. In 2009 Harrison started an unthinkable 3 Freshmen. Coach Harrison said, "I am particularly proud of this team in that we pulled a couple of the biggest upsets in the GISA by beating #1 Griffin Christian, undefeated at the time and they went on, and never lost until the state title game. A great win for the Heritage program, along with another huge upset over heavily favored Fullington Academy, who were picked to be a finalist. Heritage had only won 3 games in the two years prior to Coach H. 

 

                                    

 

  For Coach Harrison's coaching availability, please email or text. See Contact Page

 

 

 

 
 NEWCOACH TALKS DOUBLE WING /  GUN-WING

                                        CLICK HERE  

                            

      COACH'S TAKE ON WHY RUN THE DOUBLE WING OFFENSE  

 

 

                        2004 STATE RUNNER-UP

                    For 2004-2006 Seasons, See NGA Pages
   

                              

                                                2004 GISA Class "A" Coach of the Year

 

 

2008 - 2009 the Heritage School Hawks (Newnan, GA) In 2008, Coach Harrison became the new Head Coach of the Heritage Hawks in Newnan Georgia. The Hawks had just recently picked up football in 2006 so most of the players have only 2 years of total football experience. Harrison took the prior 2 year 3-17 record of the Hawks immediately to 2 winning seasons and 2 playoff bids.

2006 Coach Harrison speaks, and makes presentation, at the annual Double Wing Symposium in Frisco (Dallas) Texas in February.  " Wow, such a large group of coaching nut cases like myself, Coach Tim Murphy, and others for 3 days sharing info. There were lots of great times laughing so hard it hurt and outdoor demos in sub-freezing weather with 40 MPH winds and that hurt too." I had a terrific time, getting to know a great group of fine coaches from Maine to Southern California and all points in between, and made 120 or so new friends.

 
 

        

 

               
 
    It was great meeting and doing the clinic thing in 2006 with One of the best in the country, Coach Tim Murphy who is now winning huge at Clayton Valley in California.... You know, the home of the "Ugly Eagles"

 

 

Click HERE for DETAILS AND PICTURES OF COACH'S 2005 ARIZONA TRIP

2005 Coach Harrison speaks at "Hugh Wyatt's", Atlanta Double Wing Clinic on 2-26-2005.

(This From Hugh Wyatt's Web Site)****** What a great lineup of speakers at the Atlanta Clinic - Larry Harrison, who went from being an offensive coordinator at a large high school that didn't always appreciate his offense, to head coach at a small private high school - Nathanael Greene Academy - which he took to this year's state final game. Oh yes - and he did it without a single assistant... Steve Jones, of Ocean Springs, Mississippi, who has coached the Double-Wing successfully at three different schools, taking the Ocean Springs Greyhounds to this year's Class 5A (largest class) final game; Kevin Latham, who as a middle school coach won a DeKalb County (suburban Atlanta)   championship, suffered a near-fatal heart attack (at the age of 37) and just finished his first year as a high school head coach at Decatur's Columbia High School. Considering the stereotype that so many of us fight - that our offense is just three or four plays from only one formation - I can only say what an incredible feeling it is to know that we have  advanced to the point where at Atlanta and other clinics, there are now men of the caliber of coaches Gibson, Harrison, Jones and Latham able to step up and share the things they're doing.

         Coach Harrison among friends as the Atlanta Clinic comes to a close. Coach Harrison was the final speaker of the day as he outlined the Nathanael Greene season (11-2) and the great young men he was blessed to coach. He answered questions in detail about the offense and what people do, to try to stop it. "The first thing I had to do at NGA was to try to bring the FUN of playing football back to the kids there. They bought into the plan and we indeed had a great time, week to week, getting ready for the next opponent."

   

COACH HARRISON: "In my many years of pursuing various interests, I have consistently stayed with coaching football from childhood till now. I have coached football on every level from the upper youth levels through High School, and have just as much enthusiasm now as I ever have, about getting kids to play and learn a high level of football.  It seems, that every where I've coached, I have ended up taking on the struggling team in the struggling programs and have been very fortunate, in making winners and over achievers with them, and in highly unlikely situations. After 35 years of coaching, I have managed to post a near 70% lifetime winning record, taking some situations where kids had never won, and working them into being very competitive. I have had a number of championships, several undefeated teams, and many finalists. I was many times blessed to have had terrific coaches in my youth and high school, which really set the course for my successes in coaching. I was very fortunate to have played for a couple of really good youth coaches, and my mentor and senior high school coach, Phil Knight, one of Georgia's great coaches, in my opinion and many other's opinion".

"In the 2003 football season, I was fortunate enough to be hired, and served as Offensive Coordinator at Lakeside High School in DeKalb County (Atlanta) Georgia where my double wing offense led the county in rushing, averaging over 300 yards per game, and instrumental in getting Lakeside back on the winning track going (6-4) after a long loosing spell. Then in 2004, I was hired as the Head Football Coach at Nathanael Greene Academy High School where my hope was to get the Patriots to football prosperity with my Double Wing Offense. Then, some amazing things started happening".

**The 2004 football season is over and we did a most unexpected thing. Coming in very optimistic and ready to take on the challenges of the Nat-Greene situation, I had no idea that the progress we were making was so dramatic. We went to work, and with the efforts, great attitudes, and high spirits, of the great kids we have here, an amazing season happened, finding us in the state championship game playing for all the marbles. In the beginning we were just tickled to death to win a scrimmage and then our opener which was a big rival in Piedmont Academy, a strong "AA" program, but then to follow with a win over a very athletic and strong Monroe Academy team coached by Ted McMichael, we started feeling some confidence that we just may be competitive. We then cruised a bit until the defending champs came in. They looked like a team two leagues up from our "A" status but I think they claim to be legitimate. They beat us good but a second half comeback, just loosing 26-18, shot us into a higher level of play, for the balance of the season. We had shocking wins over a good "AA" Gatewood team 48-6 and ended up finishing the season scoring in the 40's 50's and 60's with our offense, and shutting down very strong opponents. We ended our regular season with a huge win over, then #1, Thomas Jefferson, and a win over a huge team and cross town rival, John Hancock 52-13. Going into the playoffs, we were as confident as could be and marched on like a team that you would think was a very huge, strong, 270 pound monster type team, but we were still playing with the original 17 players we started with, averaging maybe 170 pounds. These kids had hearts that were larger than life, and I've learned to never put the huge size of individuals over the size of the hearts of kids, ever. After taking care of Randolf Southern and a great Westwood team, we ended up loosing the title game to the same Toombs team that beat us during the season. The time to win it ALL was just not ours, even though we beat them in every facet of the game except the score. Our mistakes killed us but that is part of the growing process. The heartbreak is still fresh but we will get over it and crank it back up next year. We are loosing 9 seniors which is usually un-survivable at this level, but we will be checking the heart size, of the kids coming up, and try to ignore the even younger aged and slighter size we will display. A couple of move-ins wouldn't hurt for sure, but no matter what, our goal will always remain the same.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

The 2004 football season is over and we did a most unexpected thing. Coming in very optimistic and ready to take on the challenges of the Nat-Greene situation, I had no idea that the progress we were making was so dramatic. We went to work, and with the efforts, great attitudes, and high spirits, of the great kids we have here, an amazing season happened, finding us in the state championship game playing for all the marbles. In the beginning we were just tickled to death to win a scrimmage and then our opener which was a big rival in Piedmont Academy, a strong "AA" program, but then to follow with a win over a very athletic and strong Monroe Academy team coached by Ted McMichael, we started feeling some confidence that we just may be competitive. We then cruised a bit until the defending champs came in. They looked like a team two leagues up from our "A" status but I think they claim to be legitimate. They beat us good but a second half comeback, just loosing 26-18, shot us into a higher level of play, for the balance of the season. We had shocking wins over a good "AA" Gatewood team 48-6 and ended up finishing the season scoring in the 40's 50's and 60's with our offense, and shutting down very strong opponents. We ended our regular season with a huge win over, then #1, Thomas Jefferson, and a win over a huge team and cross town rival, John Hancock 52-13. Going into the playoffs, we were as confident as could be and marched on like a team that you would think was a very huge, strong, 270 pound monster type team, but we were still playing with the original 17 players we started with, averaging maybe 170 pounds. These kids had hearts that were larger than life, and I've learned to never put the huge size of individuals over the size of the hearts of kids, ever. After taking care of Randolph Southern and a great Westwood team, we ended up loosing the title game to the same Toombs team that beat us during the season. The time to win it ALL was just not ours, even though we beat them in every facet of the game except the score. Our mistakes killed us but that is part of the growing process. The heartbreak is still fresh but we will get over it and crank it back up next year. We are loosing 9 seniors which is usually un-survivable at this level, but we will be checking the heart size, of the kids coming up, and try to ignore the even younger aged and slighter size we will display. A couple of move-ins wouldn't hurt for sure, but no matter what, our goal will always remain the same.

The 2005 football season came to a fevered pitch before the sad ending. We made the final 4 once again and lost a thriller in 2-Overtimes to a very good Toombs team. In a year that most folks call a rebuilding year, we were among the very best in our league at the end and that is what you strive for as a player and a coach. Not predicted to utter a sound after loosing so many seniors, this group of fighters worked their way through a tremendous amount of injuries like I've never witnessed, and fought week in week out getting better and having new kids step up to the challenge every week. 4 of the 5 games we lost this year were so close that it was determined by and extra point or one miscue on one particular play. Man, how close can you get? And then the finale (see game page). It was the game of games and we all know how that went. You can't get closer to winning and not win, it's that simple. Well, it's on to next year and the good news is that we only loose 4 seniors. The bad news is that they are huge players for us. This is the sad part of coaching, saying good-by to great kids! I hope they come around to visit like the 2004 guys do. It's always great to see the great kids that played here coming back to support the guys following their lead. 

The 2006 football season has now ended with a great group of seniors winding up their football careers with great stories and accomplishments for a lifetime. We finished 9-4 and a Semi-finalist once again which in 3 years, these seniors finished as a Region Champion and  State Runner up and 2 time Semi-Finalist. These four accomplishments are a first in the schools 38 year old history. We set offensive records here that may never be broken with 14,904 yards of offense over 3 years. To you seniors, you can take with you the fact that you were a huge piece of the 3 greatest teams in NGA history to date. What a great career, what a great season, and what a great group of young men that graced the halls of Nathanael Greene Academy.

 

The year before Coach Harrison took on the Heritage Project in 2008, he would go to his alma mater, Columbia High School, to help Friend Kevin Latham, who was also a big proponent of the double wing offense.

 

2014 Coach Harrison Joined Coach Mark Adams

Coach Harrison, after a rest from football, returned in 2014 to help Mark Adams at Druid Hills High School. After being prematurely vaulted into the storied 6-AAAAA region, arguably the most athletic region in the state, and not expecting to compete at that high level. The Druid Hills team came roaring out of the blocks, winning 4 out of their first 6 games, with 3 over heavy favorites and dropping one by only 3 points. This uncharacteristic winning streak earned Mark Adams, Georgia EMC Head Coach of the Week in week 5. Coach Adams has Moved on to Cross Keys High and Coach Harrison  has moved on to his next coaching project but wanted to wish the very best for all the fine people of the Druid Hills Community. A truly beautiful historic school and area of Atlanta. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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                                                    I found this picture below on line and thought it was a hoot, being my team looks a lot like that lined up.

   

                                                  

                                So History repeats itself and Old becomes New?  Getting close to resembling that Gun-Wing!  

 

 

 

   

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