Pending approval from the Loudoun County School Board, Potomac Falls has a new head football coach.
The Sterling school tabbed 33-year old Jason Allen to lead the program, and the school board will vote to approve the hire Tuesday night.
After spending 10 years rising from unpaid JV assistant to varsity defensive coordinator at Oscar F. Smith in Chesapeake, Va., Allen will have the first varsity head coaching gig of his career. He is already interviewing prospective assistant coaches.
“It feels fantastic,” Allen said Monday night. “I think it’s going to be a perfect fit for my family and myself. It’s a great community, a great high school.”
Potomac Falls, which finished 4-6 last season, is the latest stop in a coaching journey that began in pee-wee dugouts. As a 14-year old in Darien, Conn., Allen would kill time between doubleheaders by instructing younger players.
Allen said he knew his “calling” was to coach high school football and teach history from the time he attended Darien High School, where he won a state championship as a linebacker in 1997.
With a firm goal in mind, he earned a New York teaching license and a history degree when he played baseball and football at Stony Brook.
After college, Allen took his first job teaching social studies at Franklin High School. As an October hire, he arrived too late to coach football, so he coached JV baseball. Searching for football opportunities and a shorter commute, Allen accepted a job at Oscar F. Smith in 2003.
In the past decade on Coach Richard Morgan’s staff, Allen coached linebackers, defensive backs, running backs, quarterbacks and offensive line for the junior varsity before serving as that squad’s defensive coordinator and head coach.
At the varsity level, he coached defensive backs, linebackers, and wide receiver before coordinating special teams and eventually defense. He also spearheaded the offseason weightlifting and conditioning program.
“All of that kind of made me very well-rounded and prepared me the best that I possible could be for being a first-year head coach,” Allen said.
Over the course of his time at Oscar F. Smith, the Tigers won two Virginia AAA Division 6 state championships and lost only 16 games.
Allen will implement a similar pro-style, multiple scheme offense and an “attacking style” 4-3 base defense with multiple fronts and coverages.
In addition to Morgan and Scott Burnett, Oscar Smith’s offensive line coach, Allen listed several NFL coaches as major influences.
He just finished Pete Caroll’s book, “Win Forever,” and has Bill Belichick and Charlie Weis on the bookshelf. Tomes about Vince Lombardi including “When Pride Still Mattered” and “Instant Replay” are two favorites.
Potomac Falls will host a meet-and-greet for players and parents on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. After watching film and introducing himself to players here and there, the new coach likes what he sees.
“They seem like great kids,” he said. “They seem really willing to work. They hustle. They seem like they really love playing the game of football.”
Related: Potomac Falls football