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Sam Greiner resigns as football coach at Hickory Ridge

Football player talks about being taken in by his coach as a son

Harding High football coach Sam Greiner has rebuilt Harding's football program through his faith and his perserverance, and the Rams are a favorite to win the NC 4A football championship. Harding is 10-1 in Greiner's third season and enjoying thei
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Harding High football coach Sam Greiner has rebuilt Harding's football program through his faith and his perserverance, and the Rams are a favorite to win the NC 4A football championship. Harding is 10-1 in Greiner's third season and enjoying thei

Two years ago, Sam Greiner led Harding High School to an improbable and remarkable N.C. 4A state football championship.

He was on top of the world.

But after one season as head coach at Harrisburg’s Hickory Ridge High, Greiner told the Observer he resigned Thursday, about two weeks before the start of June workouts.

For the moment, Greiner is out of football.

“Due to circumstances,” Greiner said, “I think it’s in my best interest that I resign as football coach. I love those kids. I think they work really hard. I was as excited about the future as I could be. They’re going to be great.”

Greiner, 37, was 5-6 as head coach at Hickory Ridge last season. The Ragin Bulls were forced to forfeit their final two games of the 2018 season, as well as a potential playoff berth, due a bench-clearing brawl last October in a 42-7 win over East Mecklenburg.

Greiner said he will remain at the school as a weightlifting coach, but will begin to search for another head coaching job.

“Well, the best thing about this,” he said, “is that I have a friend that works with me, Jupiter Wilson, and I hope he gets a chance at the job. But like I said, I love those kids and it was a great spring. Everybody was getting accustomed to us. But for that program to succeed, I think it’s best that I step down.”

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