Evergreen picks former Columbia River coach to take over football program

Christian Swain is the new leader of the Plainsmen

Christian Swain made no secret that he initially wanted to get back to Oregon to resume his high school football coaching career.

Christian Swain will be changing colors and changing sides of town, moving from the west to the east. Swain has been named the new head coach at Evergreen High School. He coached Columbia River the past three seasons. Photo by Mike Schultz
Christian Swain will be changing colors and changing sides of town, moving from the west to the east. Swain has been named the new head coach at Evergreen High School. He coached Columbia River the past three seasons. Photo by Mike Schultz

Then another opportunity presented itself.

“We started talking about the Evergreen tradition, started talking about the kids there,” Swain said. “I thought with my background, my coaching journey, it was a great fit there.”

On Tuesday morning, Swain got the OK to announce the news. He is the new head coach at Evergreen.

“First of all, I’m honored and excited,” said Swain, who has been Columbia River’s coach the past three seasons. “Evergreen’s such an amazing program with tradition and history in Clark County.”

Indeed, the Plainsmen won the 2004 state championship, the first big school from the county to win a state football title.

The program has struggled in recent years, though. The Plainsmen have not had a winning season since 2008.

“For right now, we want to focus on things we can control. Focus on our character, what we’re doing in the classroom, how we treat people in the community,” Swain said. “I can’t give you a timeline of when things will turn, from wins and losses. It’s been my experience if you do things the right way, things turn quickly. I like the trajectory of the program.”

Swain resigned from Columbia River this past winter. He has worked in high schools for 17 years but never as a teacher. Now, he is working his way into the classroom.

Initially, he thought he was going to go back to Oregon. Swain was instrumental in turning around the Roosevelt program prior to coaching at Columbia River. Instead, he will be doing his student teaching at Evergreen.

“It will really make it a nice transition to be in the school,” Swain said. “A huge benefit.”

It was Swain’s performance at Roosevelt that resonated with administrators at Evergreen.

“I think his ability to relate to kids is a positive. He has done a great job at programs similar to Evergreen,” said Keenan Burris, Evergreen’s athletic director. “He’s a right fit for us. I think there will definitely be some positives as we move forward.”

Swain takes over for Terry Hyde, who coached Evergreen for four seasons.

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About The Author

Paul Valencia joins ClarkCountyToday.com after more than two decades of newspaper experience. He became the face of high school sports coverage in Clark County during his 17 years at The Columbian. Before moving to Vancouver, Paul worked at Oregon daily newspapers in Pendleton, Roseburg, and Salem. A graduate of David Douglas High School in Portland, Paul enlisted in the U.S. Army, serving three years as a soldier/journalist. He and his wife Jenny recently celebrated their 20th anniversary. They have a son who has a passion for karate and Minecraft. Paul’s hobbies include: Watching the Raiders play football, reading about the Raiders playing football, and waiting to watch and read about the Raiders playing football.

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