Terry feels ‘love and pride’ for Conway as head coach

Conway High School has removed the interim tag from in front of Carlton Terry’s name.

The 49-year-old was named the school’s permanent head football coach during a Monday school board meeting, and was notified of his approval shortly thereafter by CHS Principal Lee James.

“I feel excited and humbled at the same time that I get an opportunity to lead our student-athletes going forward,” Terry said. “It’s something I wanted to do. I have a love and pride for Conway High School and our community.”

Terry had served as interim coach since Chuck Jordan was placed on administrative leave following an incident with a student near the end of the 2016-17 school year.

“Being a head coach has been a goal of mine,” Terry said. “I’m really excited for the opportunity to lead our young men.”

Terry grew up in Conway and began playing recreation league football in elementary school.

He went on to become one of the best football players in Conway High School history and played in the North-South All-Star Game before graduating in 1987.

Terry started at tailback for four consecutive years at Western Carolina University, serving as a team captain during both his junior and senior campaigns. After graduating from WCU, Terry returned to the hometown he loved and went to work.

He worked as a loan officer at Conway National Bank for 15 years, while also coaching running backs at his alma mater under Jordan’s tutelage. He eventually decided to change gears, switch careers and work full time at CHS.

Terry was chosen by a selection committee and underwent two rounds of interviews before being tapped.

“I’m confident he’s the right man for the job,” James said. “Obviously it was a committee decision. I’m personally excited for Carlton Terry. He was an outstanding player and is now an outstanding coach.”

James uses words like loyal to describe Terry.

“He understands our system,” James said. “He can build on the success we’ve already had. I know he can motivate students to be successful on the field and beyond.”

Terry led Conway to 10 wins and the second round of the state playoffs during his season as interim coach.

“It was a difficult situation to be in, but the coaches and players came together and made it a good season,” he said. “The experience was great because I had an opportunity to lead this program and learn about being a head coach.

“I watched Chuck Jordan so long and learned from him. In a lot of ways he prepared me for this because I was included in a lot of the decisions he made.”

Before becoming interim coach, Terry served as Jordan’s offensive coordinator the previous four years. Before that he worked with the secondary for three years.

“I think football teaches you a lot about life, how to go through adversity and how to work through it and solve problems,” Terry said. “It teaches you that no matter what comes up, you can work through it and be successful.”

Photo by Robert Anderson/myhorrynews.com

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