WARREN_HANDLEY1

Warren County quarterback Bryce Post looks to throw under pressure as Handley’s Rodd’ney Davenport, left, and Caleb Metzger, center, defend during a football game last year in Front Royal.

Warren County's search for a football coach was going to take some time to begin with, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, things have been even tougher.

Warren County Athletic Director Ed Dike said that he hopes to have a new coach within the next week.

"It puts us way behind the eight-ball," Dike said. "We were able to get our football interviews done. We just haven't been able to make a hire because we don't know what's going on with certain (teaching) positions. We don't know what we can fill and what we can't fill."

On top of that, Dike said he is looking for a new cheerleading head coach and a new head girls basketball coach.

Former Warren County head football coach Brian Bush resigned in early January to pursue other endeavors after a season of turmoil.

Bush went 10-22 in three seasons at the helm at Warren County. The Wildcats went 2-8 this past season and qualified for the Region 3B playoffs, but gave up their playoff spot after having numerous players quit the team after Warren County’s last regular-season game.

Brian Bush's sister Bridgette resigned as the head cheerleading coach and his father Randy resigned as head girls basketball and assistant football coach.

"I lost three Bush's in one swing," Dike said.

Both Bridgette Bush and Randy Bush came to Warren County after Brian was hired to be closer together as a family. They were from the Roanoke area and Dike said that Randy Bush is planning to move back to Roanoke.

Dike said Randy Bush did a great job with the girls basketball program. The Wildcats struggled and won only two games last year in Randy Bush's first season as head coach.

This season the team went 6-17, but they won four of their last six games.

"What he got those kids to do was to believe in themselves a little bit," Dike said. "We didn't have a whole lot of talent on paper, but he got those kids to play to the best of their ability. The last four or five games of their season was the best four or five games I've seen them play in two years."

The Wildcats won their first-round Region 3B tournament game, before falling to eventual state quarterfinalist Brentsville in the regional quarters.

Warren County had a young team with only two seniors. One of the seniors, Brianna Hogan, recently committed to play volleyball and basketball at Emory & Henry.

"I'm going to miss him," Dike said of Randy Bush. "He really got things moving in the right direction. Hopefully, we can stay the course with that."

Dike said that Warren County assistant football coach Bud Tolliver has been doing a good job with working with the football players, even in the tough times.

Tolliver has been running the Warren County football account on Twitter and has been posting exercises that athletes can do from home. Last week, he was even showing them how to do it.

"He's doing a heck of a job," Dike said. "I've actually had some other people that follow me on Twitter from throughout the state that have contacted me wanting to know what am I doing up there without a head coach. I said: 'Well you know I've got one of the assistants who is just killing it.' ...Last week he was like leading the exercise and the other kids were starting to pipe in and then we actually had a couple teachers follow along too. So that was kind of cool."

Contact Tommy Keeler Jr. at tkeeler@nvdaily.com