The Official Student Media of Blue Valley North High School


The Official Student Media of Blue Valley North High School


The Official Student Media of Blue Valley North High School


In with the New


On Feb. 15, Athletic Director Kelli Kurle announced that coach and physical education teacher Drew Hudgins would not be returning for the next season. Hudgins, a first-year coach at BVN, was the head coach in the team’s 0-8 season. 

Hudgins came from Mill Valley where he served as Defensive Coordinator for eight seasons. His arrival at BVN was an attempt to fill the void left when coach Adam Pummil announced he would not be returning to BVN for the 2023-2024 football season. Hudgins will be moving on to Staley High School to be the head coach for the upcoming fall season. Hudgins’s quick departure came as a shock to both Kurle and the Mustang community.

“Last time [when searching for a new coach] I had been keeping tabs on coaches,” Kurle said. “We knew the parents in their community loved [Hudgins], so then when we hired him, I stopped keeping tabs on other coaches because I didn’t feel like that [coaching spot] was going to be a position or something that we would have to fill for a while.”

The choice was a very personal and hard one to make, Hudgins said.

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 “The biggest thing that led to my decision is my family,” Hudgins said. “We’re a growing family and wanted a little bit more time and resources to take care of our kids. My wife is a teacher, and houses in the Blue Valley area are not cheap, so we would be able to move out [near Staley High School] and afford a home and spend some more time as a family.” 

While time with family was a large factor in Hudgins’s decision, the pay increase was also a factor in the decision. Some speculated that the Mustang record this season was a large part of Hudgins’s departure from the Mustang community, but Hudgins disagreed.  

“The season really was not a factor,” Hudgins said. “This has been the hardest thing I’ve done in my entire career. Leaving a place after not getting a win is hard and just drives me further going forward.”

To replace Hudgins, the Mustangs hired coach Gene Weir as interim head coach. Weir has been coaching football for over 40 years and is well-known by many football coaches in Kansas. He has a head coaching record of 252-99 and six state titles. After being the head coach at Olathe North, he departed to Texas to be the head coach at Richland High School. Now, he said he is “honored and excited” to be at BVN.

“My teams are known for being physical, tough and fundamentally sound in the game of football,” Weir said.

Weir believes the team’s success will depend on how much effort they put in.

“The biggest thing is to help these guys understand that their record is in their hands,” Weir said. “I can give them all the tools they need, but that doesn’t matter. It is about how hard they want it and how hard they work.”

This is the football team’s third coach in three years, and Weir understands the work that will go into preparing the team for next year’s season.

“The turnover rate these kids have gone through in terms of coaches is hard, and I know that’ll bring negativity, but I’m going to come in and do my best to push those young men and make them the best I can,” Weir said.

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About the Contributor
Jack Hancock
Jack Hancock, Staff Writer
Jack Hancock is a senior and staff writer for “The North Star.” This is their first year on staff. They have covered Mustang athletics, Student life and news around the district. Outside of the newsroom, they enjoy announcing for Mustang athletics, singing in choir and announcing for Rockhurst University. They are excited to grow as a journalist and get to know the rest of the news staff.   

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