David announces plan to retire from PPISD
By Joe Fragano
After five years at the helm for the Pilot Point Bearcats, head football coach and PPISD athletic director Danny David has decided to take a step back and help usher in a new generation of leadership at PPHS.
Following a 12-year career at Collinsville, David returned to coach his hometown team in 2017. Year one was a grinder, and David and the Bearcats struggled to a 3-8 record, but it was all uphill from there.
In 2018 the Bearcats went 7-4, and in 2019 Pilot Point’s 12-2 record represented the highest single season win total for any Bearcats team since their 2009 State Championship campaign. The Bearcats also won more playoff games during David’s five-year stint with the team than they had won in the seven seasons since winning the state championship.
The only regret David said he felt after his time coaching in Pilot Point was not winning a State Championship, but what he and the rest of the coaching staff accomplished since 2017 is an entirely different kind of success. The relationships built and young men influenced by David during their time wearing the uniform were what the Pilot Point native said he looks back on.
“We’ve got a really good nucleus of coaches [in Pilot Point],” David said. “It’s a family. We’re as tight a staff as I’ve been on … I think we did a lot of good things. There’s been a lot of good kids [to] come through here … Hopefully, we turned out some good young men and good young women. I really enjoyed it.”
With a year still remaining on his contract, David plans to fulfill his duties as AD through the end of the 2022-23 school year. As far as football is concerned, David will be stepping out of the head coaching spotlight in favor of the Bearcats’ current offensive coordinator, Kyle Peacock.
It will be Peacock’s show on the Bearcats’ sideline in 2022, but David said he will be around to help with the transition. In what capacity David will be involved with the team is still to be determined, but the plan in Pilot Point is to have Peacock take over while David is still there to offer guidance in whatever way is needed.
“I think coach Peacock is ready for that next step,” David said. “I didn’t want Pilot Point to lose him. He’s from Pilot Point. This is more than just a job to him just like it was to me … I’m going to be wherever [Peacock] wants me to be. I don’t want to overstep my boundaries. If he needs me to pull the equipment trailer, I’m going to be pulling that equipment trailer.”
Peacock is another graduate of Pilot Point High School and has spent the last five years on staff as an assistant and offensive coordinator for the Bearcats. PPISD Superintendent Todd Southard said Peacock’s connection to the school and the community was part of the reason the district chose to promote from within.
“Kyle has been with the district for a number of years. He grew up here, and he’s all about the orange and black. He knows the community. He knows the kids, and he’ll have coach David to help mentor him. It’s a win-win situation for our kids.”
David said the end of the 2022-23 school year is most likely the “finish line” for his coaching career, but he did leave the door open a crack for a return to the sideline elsewhere if he decides he cannot stay away. What he’s focused on in the short term is setting Pilot Point up for success with their new head football coach and spending more time with his family.
“I’m going to have a good retirement,” David said. “I’m going to enjoy watching my son Dawson play sports or whatever he chooses to do. I’m going to be a dad instead of a coach. Plus, I’m just so excited for the opportunity for Kyle and the things that he’s going to bring for Pilot Point.”