Meeteetse High School’s new football coach is the old football coach.
Zeb Hagen, who also coaches boys basketball, was an assistant football coach last year, and previously coached Longhorn football in the early 2000s, is taking over the program again.
Matt Jensen, who led the Longhorns to the six-man playoffs every year during his tenure since 2013, left the school district to become principal at Riverside Middle School in Basin.
Meeteetse advanced to the state semifinals and finished 7-3.
Jensen was also Meeteetse’s athletic director and his replacement is Scott McBride from Greybull.
Superintendent Shane Ogden announced the hires last week.
“Already being part of the program, I did it for the kids,” Hagen said of why he accepted the football role again. “I wanted to build on what we had been doing.”
Hagen was football coach between 2005 and 2009. In those days, Meeteetse, along with Ten Sleep, played in a Montana league against such nearby small-town schools across the border as Belfry and Bridger. Now Meeteetse plays Wyoming schools during the regular season.
“I remember when they made that switch,” Hagen said. “People said, “You won’t have to travel as much.”
In reality, most opponents are located farther away in Wyoming than the former Montana opponents.
Due to graduation and changing demographics in the student body, Hagen believes his entire squad will consist of just 12 players this fall. There should be four seniors, Asa Eldredge, Kaden Redding, Brandon Tew and Courtney Braten.
The Longhorns will compete in a Jamboree Aug. 19.
McBride, who spent 11 years in Greybull, but is originally from Washington state where he did some basketball coaching, steps in as athletic director in addition to other school administrative duties.
McBride has been working on sports team schedules.
Meeteetse, which is likely to have only about 40 high school aged students this school year, fields one boys and one girls team per sports season.