Lufkin ISD names interim athletic director

Todd Quick, Interim Athletic Director
Todd Quick, Interim Athletic Director
Coach John Outlaw
Coach John Outlaw
Roy Knight, Lufkin ISD Superintendent
Roy Knight, Lufkin ISD Superintendent

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Lufkin ISD Superintendent Roy Knight has named Todd Quick the interim athletic director more than a week after Athletic Director and Head Football Coach John Outlaw died of a suspected heart attack.

Quick is the Panther football team's defensive coordinator. He has coached with Outlaw for 26 years, 17 of those football seasons were spent in Lufkin.

The school board will consider the athletic director vacancy at their January 19, 2012 meeting. Board members will discuss how they want to move forward with the position and if they will choose to hire internally or search elsewhere for candidates.

"In the past 40 years, we've had one head coach with this kind of success really for all our programs and that's been Coach Outlaw and we certainly want to continue that legacy," Knight said.

Quick also teaches a dual-credit history course at LHS, so, administrators will need to decide on an interim replacement for Quick in the classroom.

Coach Quick says his priority today is getting kids focused and back to work.  Quick says that is as Coach Outlaw would have wanted it.  Quick, LISD faculty, students, and much of the community is still recovering from the shock of the loss.  Coach Outlaw's office is still as he left it as the transition period begins.

Knight said he has received dozens of calls and text messages from people who have expressed interest in applying for the job, as well as, from people who have offered names of possible candidates.  He would not comment beyond that on who might be interested.  He said that is a school board decision.

"Certainly should the board choose for us to look inside, we'd want to give Todd great consideration for the job, if that's the board's decision," said Knight.

As far as Quick applying for the permanent position, Quick said the answer will come in time.

"We're going to get through today," Quick said. "It is something that we're going to discuss and we'll meet with the administrators and all that and in due time we'll have an answer to that question."

Outlaw, 58, died Friday, December 23, 2011 of what is suspected to be a heart attack.

Outlaw was discovered by his wife collapsed in the kitchen.  He had taken his daily 4:30 a.m. jog.  When emergency personnel arrived at the couple home, they worked to revive him before transporting him to Memorial Hospital in Lufkin.

Outlaw had 302 wins, 89 losses and three ties. However, those who knew him best say he won't only be remembered for his record on the field, but his love for the students he coached.

"It's a mistake to look for a clone because thankfully, there's only one John Outlaw," Knight said. "You look for a person though that shares the values and the qualities that he had because we know that works for us in this community and it wouldn't be fair to expect the next person to be John Outlaw. They've got to be who they are."

"No one will walk in John's shoes," Knight went on to say. "They surely will walk the path that he cleared for them."

What do you think?  Should Lufkin ISD look inside or outside for a new athletic director to replace the late Coach John Outlaw?  Click here to take our web poll.

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