The Red Tornadoes have hired former West Forsyth and Douglas Byrd head coach Russell Stone to lead their football team, and Hickory High School is also bringing in former Bandys standout Justin Harper to serve as an associate head coach on Stone’s staff.
The 62-year-old Stone has been a head coach for six high school programs in North Carolina, including Rowland/South Robeson, Lumberton, Purnell Swett and recently at private school Village Christian Academy this past fall.
Stone’s experienced his most coaching success at West Forsyth, where he guided the Titans to a 110-52 overall record in 14 seasons.
Stone’s career coaching record is 262-154-5.
Harper has spent the past two seasons at Virginia State University, serving as the Trojans’ wide receivers coach.
In January 2016, Harper was named VSU’s interim head coach.
The Bandys alumnus also has collegiate coaching experience at Lenoir-Rhyne, where he coached wide receivers and was part of the Bears’ 2013 NCAA Div. II National Championship game run.
A former collegiate standout at Virginia Tech, Harper spent three seasons in the NFL with the Baltimore Ravens from 2008-10 and also played a few years in the Canadian Football League with the Saskatchewan Roughriders and British Columbia Lions.
Hickory has seen their football fortunes slide the last three seasons going 4-29.