DAYTON–Less than two months after stepping aside as head football coach at Hughes High School, Chris Mobley is back in the game.
Monday evening, he was handed the keys to the West Carrollton football team near his hometown of Dayton. Mobley is a Dayton Jefferson graduate who played college football at Indiana State before graduating from Kent State.
While working in Cincinnati, he traditionally drives to Dayton on weekends to see his family. On a recent drive, as they passed West Carrollton on I-75 just outside of Dayton, he told his son he would someday coach there.
When the job came open, the random prediction became reality.
"It's close to my family," Mobley said. "My family is like 10-15 minutes away. They don't have to drive an hour down and an hour back every weekend to come support and watch. It's a good situation."
Mobley is one of the latest changes among Cincinnati Public School coaches. A little over a year ago, highly-successful Jeff Cargile was let go at Taft. Cargile has since resurfaced as the new coach at Cincinnati College Prep Academy, where he was serving as co-defensive coordinator.
The CCPA job came open when Jeremy Pflug moved from the Blue Division of the Cincinnati Metro Athletic Conference to the Red to head up the Woodward program.
Charles Boyd recently took over the Western Hills program coming over from Moeller, where he was an assistant. The Mustangs' job came open after the controversial departure of Armand Tatum.
Mobley left his coaching position at Hughes on his own accord.
Hired in 2016 at Hughes, Mobley has the best winning percentage of any coach in school history. Before his arrival, the Big Red had not had a winning season since 2007. By 2019, Mobley built them up to a 7-3 record sharing CMAC Coach of the Year honors with Cargile, then of Taft.
The past two seasons Hughes was limited due to occasional coronavirus issues and orders but still went 4-3 and 6-1, respectively.
He now takes on another project as the West Carrollton Pirates were winless last season. Their last winning campaign was in 2009 and they've had four winless seasons since. Mobley gladly accepts the challenge.
"It'll just be one of those situations where you've got to get the culture changed to get kids believing," Mobley said. "Once that starts to happen the roster will grow and kids will come out and play. The wins on the field will start to add up after that."
This is Mobley's second head coaching job. His background includes assisting at Tuscarawas Valley High School, then college stints at Muskingum and Kentucky Christian. It was there that he decided he wanted to help inner-city kids get recruited by being a head coach.
"I like being the underdog and I like being under-estimated," Mobley said. "That's going to happen at West Carrollton. Nobody's going to expect much of us. I want to fly under the radar and just work hard as we can to change the narrative there."
Just like Hughes, who shared a football field (Stargel Stadium) for games and had to walk to a nearby park in full gear to practice, it won't be easy. But, West Carrollton does have its own stadium and fans who want to watch football.
"The community seems really good, they want a winner," Mobley said. "That community's been supportive of the football program. I watched some games on YouTube and the stands look pretty packed. I will love to go coach in front of a packed stadium and get that full football experience."