Freeze respected by coaching peers

Being a successful head football coach at the college level is all about relating to high school coaches and building great relationships with them on the recruiting trail. For Arkansas State University's new Head Coach Hugh Freeze has a huge head start in this area especially with the high school coaches in the Memphis Tennessee area.

Being a successful head football coach at the college level is all about relating to high school coaches and building great relationships with them on the recruiting trail.

For Arkansas State University's new Head Coach Hugh Freeze has a huge head start in this area especially with the high school coaches in the Memphis Tennessee area.

Freeze was a successful head coach at Memphis Briarcrest Christian High School, he has earned the respect of his coaching peers.

AStateNation.com got the chance to visit with a couple of Memphis' most respected High School coaches Thursday at the Mid South Shootout in Jonesboro to get their thoughts about Freeze being the head coach for the Red Wolves.

Veteran Whitehaven, Tennessee Head Coach Rodney Saulsberry has known Coach Freeze for a long time.

"Coach Freeze is great," Saulsberry said. "We have known each other for a long time beginning when he was coaching at Briarcrest. We kept in touch while he was at Ole Miss, now its great that he has the job here, bringing a lot of excitement to Arkansas State."

According to Saulsberry it's an exciting time for Memphis High School coaches to have a friend being a head coach at an University so close to the Bluff City.

"It's exciting for coaches in Memphis because it's so close," Saulsberry said. "Another opportunity for our guys to succeed at the college level. He is familiar with the talent in Memphis."

Saulsberry is very pleased with how Arkansas State is recruiting his school.

"They have a head start at our high school," Saulsberry said. "They have already offered a lot of our seniors and even some of our juniors. They are doing a great job recruiting our kids. Coach Maurice Harris is recruiting our school, they are getting out in front of everything. They are recruiting us very aggressively."

Saulsberry was also very pleased with Thursday's Mid South Shootout Team Camp.

"Today is going well," Saulsberry said. "I love the way they got it set up, there is a lot of great competition here today. It's hot and we are working on getting better."

Another veteran coach in the Memphis area, Mitchell's Head Coach Nate Cole Sr. is also very pleased to have one of their own so close by.

"When I first found out he was going to be the head coach at Arkansas State, i thought that they made a great hire," Cole said. "It's great for the players, he knows the talent in our city."

Cole quickly said how much he loves the campus and is very familiar with Jonesboro.

"My daughter is a senior here," Cole said. "I love this campus."

Cole plans on helping Freeze as much as he can.

"Hopefully a lot of our kids will end up playing here," Cole said. "I know that my kids would be in great hands. I trust him completely. He is recruiting Memphis very heavy, its all about helping our kids get in school."