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Former ISU coach Paul Rhoads headed to Alabama for high school coaching job

In an exclusive Q&A with Local 5, the high school's head coach—and former Louisiana head coach—Mark Hudspeth explains why Rhoads decided to leave the college ranks.
Credit: AP
FILE - In this April 18, 2009 file photo, Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads looks on during his team's annual spring football game. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)

GULF SHORES, Ala. — Former Iowa State head coach Paul Rhoads is headed to Gulf Shores, Alabama to coach in the high school ranks as a defensive coordinator.

The school already has two NCAA Division I coaches on its staff: former Louisiana head coach Mark Hudspeth and former South Alabama offensive coordinator Kenny Edenfield.

"We are excited to have someone with Paul's extensive experience join our staff at Gulf Shores!" Hudspeth said. "Our school board and school principal and superintendent have made a huge commitment to our football program and to our student athletes."

Hudspeth said in adding Rhoads to the team, the school's coaching staff now has more than 50 years of Division I experience.

Local 5's Colin Cahill found out what brought Rhoads to Alabama in an exclusive interview with Hudspeth Thursday.

What does Paul Rhoads bring to the table with his experience?

Hudspeth: Paul brings the ability to coach all 11 on the defensive side of the ball. Not only will he be a great asset to our team but he will be a great resource to our current coaching staff to help him to continue to grow!

How long have you known Paul?

Obviously I am very familiar with Paul and his career, but did not know him personally before we talked about the position.

How did you pull him away from the college ranks?

With the changing culture of college football, we had a lot of interest in this position. Five candidates with FBS offensive coordinator experience applied for the job and three coaches with NFL experience.

I think at the end of the day, many coaches are looking for another alternative to the transfer portal and countless hours away from the family.

A chance for him to spend more time with his family and live at the beach and get to coach kids that are in it for the purest reasons were big factors!

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How soon will Paul join the team?

He will begin a week from Monday!

What does this do for you as head coach to have a guy come in with his experience?

He will be a great resource to lean on as we continue building our program here to compete in the very tough region in south Alabama!

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