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Former King offensive coordinator looks forward to taking over at South Lake

By: Tom Markowski, August 25, 2015, 1:23 pm

Macomb – Twenty percent of the Macomb Area Conference head coaches will enter their first season at their respective schools this season.

One of the seven is Vernard Snowden at St. Clair Shores South Lake who was the offensive coordinator at Detroit King the past five seasons. King is one of the top programs in southeast Michigan and is one of two teams (Detroit Cass Tech is the other) from the Detroit Public School League to win a state title. South Lake has enjoyed limited success on the football field so the challenge awaiting Snowden will be great.

“The culture is completely different,” he said. “The low numbers and the lack of effort is what I’ve noticed most. They’re not used to it.”

The second annual MAC media day was held on Tuesday at Macomb Dakota. Coaches had an opportunity to present their prospectus and introduce some of their players to the media and the other coaches in attendance.

South Lake returns three starters on both sides of the ball and Snowden said his team will be senior-laden, much as it was last season. Still, it will be a year of transition for Snowden and the players. He’ll have 15 seniors on a varsity squad of approximately 34.

Snowden is a 2000 graduate of Southfield High and he played football at Youngstown State before he got into coaching. He said the time was right to make the move away from King and to what will be his first head coaching position.

“It’s a good situation,” he said. “I spoke with the administrators and what they said was that the kids didn’t have someone to go to when they needed to. The culture is different. The team is mostly African-American and the school is 50/50 (black and white). I want to change that. I want more diversity. We have good kids. We’ll be patient.”

Snowden said it was a difficult decision to leave King where many of his friends remain as coaches. He said he still remains in contact with coach Dale Harvel and his staff as they often get together for lunch or dinners.

“I told my players I could have stayed and been the OC for the No. 1 team in the state,” Snowden said tongue-in-cheek.

King is expected to be one of the state’s top teams this season.

Snowden said he will bring a winning attitude and a winning mentality to southern Macomb County.

In other MAC news, coach Pat Threet left Fraser to become the coach at St. Clair Shores Lakeview and he said he will keep things simple. He knows no other way. Threet coached at Lakeview for two seasons before going to Fraser for five. In those seasons he was a coach that ran about four of five plays, all on the ground, and preached execution.

Marine City and coach Ron Glodich could take a step back this season. Four starters return and Glodich said he’ll likely start five sophomores.

Marine City is one of the state’s most consistent programs having made the playoffs 17 consecutive season. The Mariners have a streak of 32 consecutive winning seasons. No team in the state has won more games over the past 10 seasons.

The top teams in the Red Division are expected to be Clinton Township Chippewa Valley and Dakota. Chippewa Valley has 40 seniors and Dakota coach Mike Giannone said he has depth “everywhere”. In his 18 seasons as the Cougars coach Giannone said he’s never had such depth.