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Yahn tapped for Bridgeport coach position



BRIDGEPORT — Every high school football team in the Ohio Valley Athletic Conference now has a head football coach for the 2024 season.

That comes after the Bridgeport Exempted Village School District Board of Education approved the hiring of Andrew Yahn as the Bulldogs new gridiron boss during a meeting Wednesday night. He replaces Fred Ray who stepped down earlier this spring.

“I’m very excited to get things started,” Yahn said. “I was able to meet with the guys earlier today and kind of go over my plan and my vision for them. The big thing for us is we need to get back to the fundamentals of football. We can’t turn the ball over. We need to be able to run the ball effectively and play very aggressive defense.

“The vision is to bring back the winning attitude and atmosphere. In order to do that, we need to bring back the mental and physical toughness,” he noted.

Yahn’s prior coaching experience came at Wheeling Park and West Liberty University.

“I learned quite a lot during my time at Wheeling Park and West Liberty as an assistant coach,” Yahn admitted. “I coached under the late Mark Nardone and the current head coach, Chris Daugherty, at Wheeling Park, and also Roger Waialae at West Liberty. I learned many different positions and many different leadership skills and qualities, which I am very grateful to have had all three of those coaches in my life.”

When asked why he wanted to be the head football coach at Bridgeport, he said, “I wanted to use the skills and qualities I’ve learned and give back to the community. It’s not about me, it’s about the kids.”

Yahn has been a firefighter/paramedic at the Wheeling Fire Department for the last four-and-a-half years.

He is a 2005 graduate of Wheeling Park High School and a 2009 graduate of West Virginia University where he obtained a degree in Athletic Coaching Education.

“Andrew will be taking over the head football coach and weight room supervisor positions,” Bridgeport Superintendent of Schools Brent Ripley said. “He is a fundamentally sound gentleman, which is something our kids need. He talked to the team today about the all-11 mentality, rather than individual stats. He’s more focused on team and not individual play.”

Yahn has a third-grade daughter who is enrolled in the district.

Ripley couldn’t say enough about the job Ray did.

“Fred is a good man. He did a lot of good things for our football program as well as the district,” Ripley pointed out. “He will remain as a teacher here.”

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