A former assistant at McEachern and Hillgrove, and most recently the head coach at Chapel Hill High School in Douglasville, Pastrick was named the new coach at South Cobb on Friday.
Pastrick’s sights are set on returning the Eagles to their winning ways — not in the near future, but immediately. He succeeds Michael Youngblood, who resigned after a 3-7 record in his first and only year at South Cobb coach.
“I’m letting (the players) know that I have a ‘right now’ plan,” Pastrick said. “I don’t have a two- to three- to four-year plan. I want to win right now and give the seniors an opportunity to be successful.”
When South Cobb kicks off in the fall, it will be three years removed from arguably the best season of its long history, when the Eagles went 8-4 and under former coach Ed Koester. They earned their first playoff win in nearly a half-century of football before falling to eventual state runner-up Walton in the second round of the state playoffs.
South Cobb followed that up with a 7-3 record in 2012 but it lost a tiebreaker to Hillgrove for the final playoff spot out of Region 4AAAAAA. From there, it took a substantial hit from graduation, Koester left for South Paulding and the team struggled.
It will be up to Pastrick to turn South Cobb’s young players into a team of contenders. The Eagles will do so in a new Region 3AAAAAA, they will be joined by Campbell, Pebblebrook, East Coweta, Douglas County, Westlake and Langston Hughes.
“We want to make sure we have someone come in here and hit the ground running,” South Cobb athletic director Isaac Kelly said of the introduction of Pastrick. “We look forward to having success this season as we approach this new region.”
Pastrick is returning to Cobb County following a two-year stint at Chapel Hill, where he went 11-11 and twice made the playoffs. Each year, his teams sported 5-2 region records.
Before taking the job at Chapel Hill, Pastrick spent four years on Kyle Hockman’s staff at McEachern, first as offensive line coach and then as the assistant head coach.
Pastrick also coached the offensive line coach at Hillgrove, under Philip Ironside, in the 2006 and ’07 seasons.
Pastrick says he plans on installing a pistol offense, very similar to what Hockman employs at McEachern.
“He’s a good friend and a good man, and I am glad to have him back in Cobb County,” Hockman said. “He’s a top-notch guy who is great with student-athletes. He will be a great match for South Cobb.”
Pastrick is an offensive-minded coach, playing two seasons on the offensive line at Texas State before a back injury ended his career. He said South Cobb’s offense will be “up-tempo, fast-paced and will try to score as many points as it can.”
Although he’s eager to get things turned around at South Cobb, Pastrick said he’ll take things slow during his first couple of months on the job. He will use spring practice to evaluate both players and coaches, and he will wait until the summer before fully installing the team’s new offensive and defensive packages.
“I’m fired up, man,” Pastrick said. “I’m really excited.”