High School Football

Fort Mill goes north of the border to find its new head football coach

Former Lake Norman High head coach Rob McNeely demonstrates blocking techniques to some of the Wildcats' players during the team's preseason mini-camp in 2015. McNeely has been hired as the new head coach at Fort Mill High.
Former Lake Norman High head coach Rob McNeely demonstrates blocking techniques to some of the Wildcats' players during the team's preseason mini-camp in 2015. McNeely has been hired as the new head coach at Fort Mill High. Charlotte Observer file photo

About a month into its search for a football coach, Fort Mill High has found the Yellow Jackets’ new head man.

Former Lake Norman High coach Rob McNeely is the program’s new leader. He was approved by the Fort Mill school board after the hire was discussed in an executive session during the board’s meeting Tuesday night. McNeely will join Fort Mill in January, according to a statement from Principal Dee Christopher.

“We are pleased and excited Coach McNeely will be joining the Fort Mill High family as head football coach,” Christopher said.

“Coach McNeely will bring an exciting brand of football to our school and community. More importantly, he will bring a coaching style which develops the character of the student-athletes and put them in the best position to be successful.”

McNeely was head coach at Lake Norman High School for the past eight seasons. His teams were 54-40, including 43-20 over the past five years. During that span, Lake Norman won two conference championships and played in the 4AA West Regional final. Lake Norman was 12-1 in 2016.

He started his career in 1997 at West Iredell High School, where he was an assistant football coach and coached other sports. Prior to becoming head coach at Lake Norman, he was the team’s defensive coordinator for eight years.

McNeely replaces Ed Susi, who announced his resignation at the end of this season.

“I started to think about it (stepping down) the last few weeks of the year,” Susi said in November. “I think we both need a new direction. I think it is the right time to do it. Pretty soon there will be another school around here and it will give the new coach a chance to get his feet wet first.”

Susi was 51-71 during his 11 years in charge of the Yellow Jackets program.

Bret McCormick: 803-329-4032, @RHHerald_Preps

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