The Cleburne ISD board of trustees approved the hirings of three new head coaches at Monday night’s meeting.
Rosalind Lawrence is returning home as head girls basketball coach and girls athletic coordinator for the Lady Jackets. Jeffrey Bush was named Cleburne’s head boys basketball coach. And after a successful tenure in Alvarado, Micah Horner was approved as the Lady Jackets’ head soccer coach.
"There’s no place like home," Lawrence said. "That quote is definitely true. ... It means a lot to me because I understand the pride that goes into wearing the black and gold. Being a former Lady Jacket is something that’s near and dear to my heart."
After more than 15 years of coaching girls basketball across the state, Lawrence, a 1998 CHS graduate, comes back to where it all began. She was a standout basketball player for the Lady Jackets before continuing her playing career at Blinn College for two years and then two more years at Midwestern State University, where she was an all-conference selection.
“I think the biggest thing is her having a prominent history in the community and her work ethic is impeccable,” Cleburne Athletic Director Jeri Hall said. “For her to understand what we need long-term, she’s someone who’s going to be committed to staying and investing in the program across the board.”
In addition to Lawrence’s role as head girls basketball coach, she will also serve as the Cleburne ISD girls athletic coordinator.
“I think her experience right now from McKinney Boyd and having six feeder schools is going to be vital in building a girls’ athletic program as well, seeing she’s going to be the girls athletic coordinator, too,” Hall said. “She’s going to bring a wealth of knowledge in getting those kids to buy in at an early age, not just in girls basketball but across the board.”
Lawrence has served as head coach at McKinney Boyd High School since 2016. Prior to Boyd, she was head girls basketball coach at Joshua for three years. She’s also led programs at Houston’s Spring Woods and Midland’s Robert E. Lee. She began her coaching career as an assistant at Blinn College from 2003-05.
Following the retirement of Kurt White, Bush now takes command of the boys basketball program after he most recently served as head coach at De Leon High School.
Bush’s coaching experience includes head positions with Groveton ISD and Loop ISD. From 2014-18, he was an assistant coach at Waxahachie Life during a stretch where the Mustangs made multiple deep playoff runs.
“He spent four years at Life Waxahachie as their first varsity assistant, and they made a really good run to the regional finals one year,” Hall said. “Everyone we talked to, and just his energy when he walked into the room, we were all ready to go play basketball for him.
“That program is going to take a lot of work. The numbers aren’t as great and with the level of competition, he’s going to have to put in a lot of work and he’s someone that is willing to invest in that. Being in De Leon, they didn’t have a whole lot, so he understands getting the most of what you have.”
Horner makes the short move over from Alvarado after leading the Lady Indian soccer program since 2014, where she guided Alvarado to five consecutive playoff berths and five consecutive bi-district titles.
“I feel like sometimes our girls soccer program has gotten overlooked a little bit,” Hall said. “... She’s someone who gets the whole picture. During her interview, she’s talking about the Lone Star Cup like ‘why wouldn’t Cleburne be competing for that?’ I feel like for her to come in [at Alvarado] and do what she’s done in such a short amount of time there, it’s crazy not to bring her over.”
Horner said she’s excited for the opportunity in Cleburne.
“I am looking forward to hitting the ground running and bringing pride to the program,” Horner said. “The Lone Star Cup is a prestigious award for high schools in Texas and I expect the girls soccer program to be a constant and consistent contributor to Cleburne High School’s chase for the award.
“There is a buzz and excitement around the athletic programs at Cleburne. I want girls soccer to be part of that excitement and energy. I expect to compete for a district championship each year. I expect to be playing beyond spring break and into the playoffs. I am excited about the challenge and can’t wait to get things going this summer starting with strength and conditioning as well as summer skills.”
After building a solid program in Alvarado, Horner said it was difficult telling her players in Alvarado that she was taking on a new job.
“Telling the girls in Alvarado was the hardest part,” she said. “Those girls are special. They are talented and will continue to be successful. They have a vision and aren’t afraid to work. I only expect for them to continue what has been started. I am extremely grateful to Dr. Kenneth Estes, Mr. Chris Magee and Coach Jeff Dixon for the opportunity I had at Alvarado.”