News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Clayton Hall is Outlaws head football coach

Clayton Hall has played sports his whole life and has always loved athletics. He is thrilled to be Sisters High School’s (SHS) new head football coach, and will bring enthusiasm and a whole new look to the program.

Hall was a four-year player in football, basketball, and baseball at McMinville, High School, where he graduated in 1998. Clayton played at the quarterback position all four years, and ironically had current SHS Athletic Director Gary Thorson as his coach.

In high school, Clayton earned the Corrigan Triple Athlete Award and was also a first-team, all-league catcher in baseball.

After high school, Hall worked for a year at a sawmill in Grande Ronde, saved $12,500, and went on a two-year mission trip for his church to Costa Rica.

Shortly after returning from his mission trip, Hall joined the U.S. Marine Corps and was on active duty four years (2002-2006) in Iraq and Okinawa, Japan. When he returned he joined the National Guard (2007-2013) and during that time was deployed back to Iraq.

“On my first deployment we went on a lot of missions and night raids, and sadly lost 35 Marines that were in our battalion,” said Hall. “It was interesting to see the difference from the beginning of the war to basically the end of it. The last time there it was more stable and we had better relationships with the Iraqi nationals. My first time over we didn’t have any Iraqis on base and when I returned there were at least 50-100. They had more trust in us and we trusted them to be on our base.”

Hall returned home from Iraq in 2010 and decided to attend Brigham Young University (BYU) in Utah. He attended part-time for a while and went full-time in 2013. He dabbled in political science and communications, until one day while playing basketball at Gold’s Gym a chance conversation changed the course of his life.

Clayton met a guy on the court who was a health teacher and football coach at Provo High School, which was right across the street from the university. Hall was asked if he’d be interested in volunteering with the football program. Clayton decided to go for it and the rest is history.

After a year as a volunteer, Hall realized he loved coaching and changed his major to physical education/teaching/coaching.

Hall said, “I thought to myself, ‘Why would I want to do anything different?’”

Clayton coached at Provo High School under the mentorship of Tony McGeary, a well-known Utah high school football coach who had 30 years under his belt.

“I learned his offensive system, which won a state championship in 2012, and we’re implementing it here in Sisters,” said Hall.

In 2017, Hall graduated from BYU and was hired at Neah-Kay-Nie Middle School in Rockaway Beach, Oregon, to teach PE, and at the high school as the offensive coordinator for the football team. In those two years, the football program held an impressive 16-4 record. They made it to the playoffs twice, and, the second time, made it to the second round for the first time in 25 years.

In the fall of 2019, Hall went back to Provo High School to coach with McGeary in his final year of coaching.

When COVID-19 hit, Hall decided to return home to be close to his family in Prineville. He was hired by Ridgeview High School as their co-offensive coordinator and as the running back coach. Clayton took a year off from work to pursue an online master’s degree in sports conditioning and performance, which he hopes to finish soon.

Earlier in the year, Hall saw the job opening for the head football coach position in Sisters and decided to apply. Athletic Director Thorson called him a few days later, and Hall went through the interview process and was hired mid-June. When the physical education position opened at the high school, Hall jumped on that opportunity also. Again he applied, went through the process, and was hired in early August.

Hall said, “I’ve always loved the Sisters area, and it’s been a destination of mine for a long time. I love the country atmosphere and the culture, and it really fits my personality and who I am. SHS is an absolutely beautiful facility with an administration that supports athletics and is buying in to what we’re doing as a football program. I’ve had tremendous support from Gary Thorson and our new principal, Steve Stancliff.”

“This is my passion,” he added. “I love what I’m doing — coaching and teaching PE. I could spend hours of my own time preparing for both games and classes. I plan to stay here longterm. I love Central Oregon, fly fishing, hunting, skiing, and basically all things outdoors.”

 

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