Heritage football hires head coach

Assistant is promoted during an offseason of positive leadership

The Heritage football team found its new coach, and it turns out, the team did not have to look far from home at all.

Dennis Moody, who moved from California last year and became a teacher at Heritage High School as well as an assistant coach this past fall, has been named the new head coach.

“He really loves it here. He wants to be here. That’s the kind of person we need,” said Leta Meyer, Heritage’s athletic director.

Moody was introduced as the head coach Tuesday afternoon.

“The kids were excited. They were clapping and hollering. That’s who they wanted,” Meyer said.

Moody has been instrumental with the program during this offseason. The team has been without a head coach since soon after the 2018 season when Matt Gracey was told he would not be returning after four years in the position.

Since then, Moody has taken on a leadership role in the school.

“He has 45 athletes coming to zero period and working out before school,” Meyer said. “That’s been unheard of here.”

Moody also had taken over the team’s social media, using Twitter to send positive messages day after day.

“Phenomenal day today boys. Getting dialed in on many levels. Keep making each day better than the next. … See everyone at 7 a.m.!”

“Keep grinding and stay patient. Trust the process. Great things are coming our way.”

Always positive.

Last week, the account posted pictures of football players cleaning up the school.

“He’s a really inspirational kind of coach,” Meyer said. “He’s been working really hard with our kids through this transition, getting them in the weight room, just inspiring them. I’m really happy. He’s a proven winner. He’s turned programs around.”

Meyer also appreciates the fact that Moody has been here for a year.

“He knows what it’s going to take,” she said.

Moody was unavailable for comment right after the meeting to introduce him as the football coach because he is also an assistant track coach.

This will be his 12th season as a high school football coach, and his second stint as a head varsity coach.

He led Robert F. Kennedy High School of Delano, Calif., to back-to-back section titles in 2014 and 15, his first two years with the team. According to Bakersfield.com, Moody’s teams went 31-19 in four seasons. The program had gone 4-48 the previous seasons.

“He’s a kid magnet,” Meyer said. “The reaction of all the players? They love him You can see it.”

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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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