Hendrix Hires First Football Coach in 52 Years

Hendrix College has named Justin “Buck” Buchanan head coach of its first men’s football team in 52 years. 

Hendrix announced last spring that it will join the non-scholarship NCAA Division III Southern Athletic Association in the 2012-2013 academic year and add two new sports – men’s football and women’s lacrosse. The new sports will begin play in the 2013-2014 year. Hendrix last played football in 1960 and, in addition to hiring a head football coach, a national search is underway to recruit a women’s lacrosse coach.

“I am honored and excited to have this extraordinary opportunity to coach the first football team at Hendrix in 52 years,” said Buchanan. “I look forward to working with the student-athletes, fellow coaches, faculty, staff, and alumni at Hendrix and the Conway community. It’s great to be a Warrior.”

Buchanan has coached for Louisiana College, an NCAA Division III institution in Pineville, La., since 1999 and was one of the original staff members when the school’s football program was restarted. Most recently, he served as associate head football coach. He is an alumnus of D-III member Austin College in Sherman, Texas, where he graduated cum laude and received the school’s top scholar athlete award and worked as a graduate assistant for the men’s football and women’s basketball programs. 

“Selecting a new head football coach after a 52-year ‘time out’ is a critical choice,” said Amy Weaver, Director of Athletics at Hendrix.

Hendrix appointed a committee of faculty, staff, and alumni, and retained a national search firm to assist in the selection process, she said. The College received nearly 150 applications for the position.

Buchanan was “a perfect fit,” Weaver said.

“We are so fortunate to have someone of Justin’s caliber, character, and commitment to Division III culture,” she said. “He is a great addition to our coaching staff and will be a strong leader for this new sport.”

Hendrix has been an NCAA Division III member since 1992, noted President J. Timothy Cloyd.

“Hendrix wholeheartedly endorses the Division III philosophy,” said Cloyd, himself a former athlete at D-III Emory & Henry College. “Non-scholarship D-III institutions like Hendrix and other members of the Southern Athletic Association, our new conference, know that intercollegiate sports are an important part of the liberal arts experience for students and student-athletes. We represent the best blend of scholarship and sportsmanship.”

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