Providence Christian Academy head football coach Jonathan Beverly was hired to coach the Storm in February. Beverly grew up in Birmingham, Ala., and played college football for Samford University. He left his head coaching position at Childersburg High School (Ala.) last December.
In this installment of “Getting to Know,” staff correspondent Jack Leo talks with Beverly about his move to Georgia, his favorite new restaurant and more.
JL: How has your transition been from Alabama to Georgia?
JB: It’s been good. It’s been kind of crazy with the quarantine and all, but it’s been good.
JL: What do you miss the most about Alabama?
JB: I miss our church home. One of our first priorities is trying to find a church home that we can serve in. Atlanta is home for my wife, so this kind of feels like my home away from home.
JL: What is your favorite restaurant in Lilburn?
JB: I love Mexican food. The place across the street (from Providence), Los Hermanos. Los Hermanos is a winner.
JL: What’s the biggest difference between Lilburn and Birmingham?
JB: Metro Atlanta is a lot busier than Birmingham. People, on the other hand, have been very friendly, which is similar to Birmingham. Lilburn is such a diverse and welcoming community… it feels like home already.
JL: What is your favorite type of music?
JB: I love worship music, especially Elevation Worship. During the summer and during football season, I enjoy country music. For some reason, it just fits during the summer and during the fall.
JL: Have you lived in Alabama your whole life?
JB: I grew up in Birmingham and went to college there but I’ve worked in Kentucky and the Cincinnati area since I started coaching.
JL: How did playing football in high school and college make you a better coach?
JB: For me, high school football taught me the importance of teamwork and accountability. I had high school coaches who made an impact on me on both sides. I had some coaches that made the impression on me where I wanted to make kids feel the way I felt around them. I also had coaches who made me feel the opposite way.
At Samford, I had the opportunity to play for some really great men that were really good football coaches as well. My offensive line coach and my strength coach inspired me to get into coaching.
JL: What was it about them that made you want to be a coach?
JB: The way they connected with people. My strength coach’s personality was infectious. No matter where someone was from, he just connected with them so well. My offensive line coach showed me that you can be a good ball coach who knows his craft and also be a Godly man who does it the right way.
JL: How did you find Providence?
JB: The last couple years, we were very persistent in praying for an opportunity to come to Georgia. It started with an FCA coach’s camp in south Georgia. The last couple of years, we’ve been making connections with coaches and coaching families here in Georgia.
Over Christmas break, it became a main focus for us to find a job in Georgia. We were blessed to have a connection with the Providence family. I was able to sense that there was a great mission at Providence, and that there was a focus on doing things not only in a manner that glorifies God, but also in a way that’s first class in everything they do.
JL: Transitioning to your first head coaching job at Childersburg High School, you took a 2-8 team to the playoffs in just two years. How did that happen?
JB: Changing the mentality. Getting kids to believe that it’s possible to get a program in the right direction is big. When you’re taking over a program that’s struggling, you’ve got to culturally change the mindset.
We had two big wins to finish the season in Year 1. That momentum carried over into spring football the next year and that carried into the summer. It started with the mindset that winning is possible. It’s not only possible, but an expectation. I believe we’ll be able to do that here at Providence.