Duluth’s Bob Swank steps down as head football coach

Bob Swank stepped down as head football coach at Duluth High School. (File Photo: Chris Hillyard)

Duluth High School administration confirmed on Thursday that Bob Swank stepped down as the school’s head football coach.

Duluth athletic director Tessa Heaton said Paul Carter is serving as the school’s interim head football coach. Duluth is currently in the process of hiring a candidate to fill the position.

Swank is still a member of Duluth High School faculty as he searches for a coaching job closer to his home in Woodstock. The long daily commute was the primary reason he said he is moving on from Duluth.

Swank said he is proud of the gradual success Duluth football achieved in his tenure at the high school. The Wildcats won a single game in his first season in 2015 and added one win each year.

"The goal was to build a football program," Swank said. "We’ve improved every year. I felt like we were headed in the right direction. Definitely regret we didn’t get over the hump and have the first winning season in 25 years. We sent a lot of kids to play college football."

He said the most crucial focus for Duluth's development moving forward is the relationship with its youth football program and capitalizing on the recent momentum and success that marked the 2018 season.

Swank spent the previous four seasons as Duluth’s head football coach with a 10-30 record. Swank served as defensive coordinator at Duluth for two years before being promoted. From 1992 to 2004, Swank coached in the college ranks at Midwestern State (Texas), Methodist (N.C.), Buffalo State (N.Y.) and Toledo, including a stint as Buffalo State’s head coach from 2001-03. He previously was head coach at Pope High School from 2005-07.

Duluth’s 4-6 record in 2018 is the best for the football program since 2012. The Wildcats had multiple region wins for the first time since 2013. Duluth had back-to-back wins against Lakeside-Evans and Lakeside-DeKalb and won its first game against region rival Peachtree Ridge.

The Duluth football team hasn’t posted a winning record since 1995.

"I’ve enjoyed my four years as the head coach and worked with great kids and faculty, and wish them success moving forward," Swank said.

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