The Allen Eagles have a new head football coach. Lee Wiginton, who has been the head coach at Midlothian Heritage since the school opened in 2016, will take over at one of the state’s most high-profile schools.
“I am grateful and excited for the opportunity to join the Allen ISD community and lead the Allen Eagles football program,” Coach Wiginton said. “You can go just about anywhere in the nation and people will recognize the Allen Eagles’ name and the existing culture of excellence in academics and extracurriculars. I look forward to working closely with our coaches and administration to ensure our student-athletes have the tools necessary to find success during the school day, on gamedays, and in their personal lives.”
Allen ISD announced the hire Monday morning, a search process that took just over one week after former head coach Chad Morris resigned on May 13. Morris, the former head coach at SMU and Arkansas, left the position to pursue further opportunities in college football.
Wiginton had a record of 61-19 as the sole head coach of Midlothian Heritage’s six years in existence. Heritage won four district and area championships and advanced to the state quarterfinals in 2019 under Wiginton. Before taking over at Heritage, Wiginton was the head coach at cross-town Midlothian High School from 2010 until 2015.
Previously, Wiginton gained head coaching experience at Mexia ISD, Comfort ISD, and Bosqueville ISD. He has won 10 District Coach of the Year awards in his career.
In July, Wiginton was voted the Texas High School Coaches Association president. He has a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Angelo State University and a master’s degree in educational administration from Texas State University.
Wiginton has shown the ability to manufacture deep playoff runs with his football programs, including a run to the 2A Division I semifinals at Comfort in 2005.
Heritage reached at least the third round of the 4A playoffs in each of Wiginton’s first four seasons in charge, including the state quarterfinals in 2019. Last season, Heritage was 8-4 and lost in the second round of the playoffs.
“Throughout Texas, Coach Wiginton is known as a respected leader among his peers who coaches his teams with class and integrity,” said Kim Garner, Allen ISD’s athletic director. “Coach Wiginton checked all the right boxes for Allen during the interview process: producing a solid plan of instilling a winning culture in every facet of the program, leading with innovation while also honoring Allen’s incredible traditions, and focusing on the importance of uniting our community by providing communication between players, coaches, parents, and stakeholders.”
High expectations will follow Wiginton to the Allen football program, which has won five 6A state championships since 2008, including three in a row from 2012 to 2014. The school boasts a student enrollment of 7,102, the largest in the state.
Wiginton is Allen’s second consecutive coaching hire from outside of its program. The two head coaches before Morris, Tom Westerberg and Terry Gambill, were assistant coaches at Allen before they got the head coaching job. Westerberg was the offensive coordinator under Joe Martin, and Gambill was the defensive coordinator under Westerberg before leaving Allen to be the head coach at Waco Midway for six seasons.
As a high school head coach, Morris was a three-state champion, winning one title at Bay City in 2000 and back-to-back undefeated title-winning seasons at Austin Lake Travis in 2008 and 2009. Morris left Lake Travis to become an assistant coach at Tulsa University. He then was offensive coordinator at Clemson for four seasons before becoming the head coach at SMU and Arkansas. Morris served as the offensive coordinator at Auburn before being hired by Allen last season.
Wiginton does have a connection to Allen ISD Superintendent Robin Bullock. They worked at Midlothian ISD at the same time. Bullock became the deputy superintendent at Midlothian High in 2008 and was the interim superintendent in 2010 when Wiginton was hired as the head coach.