Crockett ISD Athletic Director Alton Dixon

By Greg Ritchie

Messenger Reporter

CROCKETT – The paint is still fresh in the field house behind Crockett High School. The locker rooms sparkle in the quiet days before the intense practice sessions and more intense Friday night games begin. 

Already though, the whiteboard on the wall is full of plays. Strategies that look more like something from General Patton than something from high school football. 

Crockett Independent School District athletic director Alton Dixon is beginning his second year in charge of Bulldog teams. Originally from Lufkin, he had been coaching for 13 years in both big and small schools around the state. Dixon is glad to be settled now in Crockett.

“This is a great community. Houston County is a great place.” Dixon said. “The Crockett Bulldog community – they really love their football. They love their sports in general. And most importantly they love their kids.”

Dixon is making changes in the athletic programs, from coaches to coaching styles. He acknowledged there is still more to be done.

“I am an upfront, discipline kind of guy. We’ve done some things to alter our program. Mindset, culture; these are things we continue to work on,” Dixon added. “There are some things that I need to do better; things that we as a staff have got to do better.”

Dixon is hesitantly confident about the new year of Bulldog football.

“We’re excited about the upcoming year,” Dixon said. “Our kids went through a process with me being here. I went through a process of being here. I think we have found our calibration of where we want to be. We understand our vision, our mission – what we have to complete.”

Ready for another year of Bulldog Sports

For Dixon, summer is the first quarter of the year’s “game”. The beginning of school, he sees as the second quarter. The fall camp and pre-season games are exciting to Dixon, as he prepares his staff and the students for the big leagues of Texas high school football.

“You get around this time in August – this is Texas, a ‘Friday night lights place’,” Dixon said. “We’re excited about our preparations, about new members of our staff, we are ready to rock and roll. At the same time, we know we are in a process and need to take this one step at a time.”

Dixon was inspired to become a coach at the beginning of his career when he noticed others liked the way he taught them certain moves or plays. His own background and personal story help him identify with his students and help them stay on a better path.

“”I was a rougher kid,” Dixon remembers. “And it took a village of people – my mother, my grandparent, coaches at school – to set me on a path of focus. You don’t realize that until you reach a certain destination and think, ‘This could have turned out very different.’ And I want to be that for the students. I am a player’s coach, but I learned a lot from some of the rough and tough coaches along the way.”

The first scrimmage against Elysian Fields is set to begin Aug. 11 at 5 p.m.

Greg Ritchie can be reached at greg@messenger-news.com

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