Updated: Friday, February 24, 2017
Massillon's football coaching staff hasn't looked too different over the first two seasons Nate Moore has been the head coach. His third season, though, will include the most noticeable changes to the assistant ranks of his tenure.
The Tigers will have new coordinators on both offense and defense, as well as a new quarterbacks coach and a new linebackers coach. Those changes come about due to a trio of coaches - Brett Cooper, John Cupps and Trey DePriest - leaving for various reasons.
"Multiple vacancies isn't any different than having one vacancy," Moore said. "You just work your way through them. The most important thing is getting in coaches that, at a basic level, are experts at their craft. That's a given. More importantly is what type of person they are; what types of relationships they build with people, both colleagues and players. Coaches that I know are going to treat people right and be respected members of the community and fit with our staff."
Cooper's departure comes after he was hired Thursday night to be the new head football coach at Indian Creek High School in Trafalgar, Ind. He has been the Tigers' offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach this past season; the previous season, he served as the quarterbacks coach exclusively while Jon Hunek - now the head coach at Berea-Midpark High School - was the offensive coordinator.
Cupps, who is stepping down for personal reasons, has been the Tigers' defensive coordinator throughout Moore's tenure. He has also been the Dean of Students at Washington High School.
"His family's in Southwest Ohio and his parents are getting old," Moore said. "He has a desire to be closer to his family. I understand and I know he has several opportunities he's working through down there. I wish him the best."
Both Cooper and Cupps were among the coaches who arrived with Moore when he was hired from Cincinnati La Salle in January 2015. Both were on staff - along with current Tiger strength and cornerbacks coach Terrance Roddy - when Moore led the Lancers to the 2014 Division II state championship, the first of three consecutive titles for the program.
"I'm great friends with those guys," Moore said. "Any time somebody moves on, you're going to miss those guys. Both of them made decisions that are best for them and their career and life moving forward, and I couldn't be happier for either one of them."
DePriest, who coached linebackers last season for Massillon, departed to continue his pursuit of a spot on a professional football roster, according to Moore. DePriest was an All-Southeastern Conference linebacker at the University of Alabama, and had played for Cupps at Springfield High School outside Dayton.
The offensive coordinator's position will once again be shifted in-house. This time, Jon Mazur - who has been the offensive line coach the previous two seasons - will add that title and job responsibility.
Moore did say he will look to hire a new defensive coordinator, as well as a new quarterback and linebackers coach. He didn't set a timetable on when all three of those vacancies would be filled.
"It's definitely a work in progress," Moore said. "Offensively, Jon Mazur's going to be our offensive coordinator. That was an easy move."
Another addition to the coaching staff Moore is looking to bring on are two quality-control coaches who would be strictly volunteer positions. The last two seasons, Austin Shaheen had served in a similar role, but is departing for a position within the Kent State University football program.
Moore said whomever fills those two roles must be able to give significant amounts of time to the job. Interested parties are asked to submit resumes to him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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