Meet Kelsey Pickering: The new head coach of Edwardsville High School football team

Kelsey Pickering named new head coach of Edwardsville High School football team. After 23 seasons as an assistant coach, Kelsey Pickering is taking on a new role as the head coach of Edwardsville High School football team.

The school board approved Pickering’s appointment to replace Matt Martin, who had an impressive 13-year tenure with 100-39 record, 11 postseason appearances, and three Southwestern Conference championships. Following Martin’s resignation, Pickering served as the co-interim head coach alongside Justin Winslow.

“When you start coaching, it’s always a dream and goal to be in this position,” Pickering said. “I love Tiger Football. I don’t think there is a better place for me to have my first head coaching job.”

Kelsey Pickering, a Kansas native, is the 22nd coach to lead Edwardsville High School football team since 1913, and the sixth since 1972. For the past 15 seasons, he has served as the defensive coordinator and associate head coach at Edwardsville.

“It has just felt right here,” Pickering said. “What has really made this place home are the coaches, administration and school board. If you look at the coaching staff, we don’t have turnover. Our coaching staff and the guys there make this where I want to be. I know what we have here with our assistant coaches. I don’t make Tiger Football. It’s the assistant coaches, the administration, the school board and all of the people involved. That’s why Edwardsville is a special place.”

In 2008, Kelsey Pickering joined Edwardsville High School as a physical education teacher. He followed Mark Bliss from Odessa, Missouri, who became the coach after Tim Dougherty’s 16-year tenure with a record of 132-40.

When Bliss stepped down as head coach in Week 2 of the 2010 season, Pickering remained on the coaching staff as Martin took over the role.

“I’ve been blessed with what Matt allowed me to do here and I didn’t feel the need to go outside the district,” Pickering said. “Matt has been a huge influence on my coaching with how to run a program. He has allowed me to do a lot of things over the years that have helped prepare me for a job like this.”

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