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New Clovis High Football Coach Is Valley Native From College Ranks



Aaron Wilkins Clovis football
Aaron Wilkins, who helped Liberty U. move to the NCAA's highest division, is the new Clovis High football coach. (GV Wire Composite/Paul Marshall)
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Clovis High School is entrusting its football future to a Valley native with extensive college coaching experience.

“The opportunity to lead one of the most historic programs in the state of California is one of the greatest honors of my life.” — New Clovis High football coach Aaron Wilkins

The school announced Friday afternoon that it has hired Aaron Wilkins as its new football coach.

Wilkins, an All-American safety at Reedley College, comes to the Cougars after stops at Northern Illinois University, Liberty University, and Reedley College. He began his coaching career at Firebaugh High School and also coached at his alma mater, Yosemite High School.

“This is a dream come true for me and my family,” Wilkins said in a news release. “The opportunity to lead one of the most historic programs in the state of California is one of the greatest honors of my life. I want to thank the Clovis administration for their faith in me to lead this program forward and to teach the game of life through football.”

Wilkins Replaces Hammond

Wilkins replaces veteran coach Rich Hammond, who tweeted on Dec. 1 that Clovis High told him it was hiring a new coach for the 2022 season. The Cougars finished their 2021 campaign with a 7-4 record after starting 4-0. They lost in the first round of the playoffs to Bakersfield powerhouse Liberty, 45-35.

According to the school, Wilkins is meeting the team today.

“Coach Wilkins brings great experiences and qualities from his time in college football, as well as high school football, to our program,” said Clovis High Athletic Director Jesse Hardwick. “We are looking forward to Coach Wilkins’ involvement with our student-athletes, staff members, parents, and Clovis High community.”

Wilkins’ College Resume

At Northern Illinois, Wilkins coached tight ends and was co-special teams coordinator in 2020. The previous year he was the university’s cornerbacks coach.

During his five years at Liberty University, Wilkins coached special teams, defensive line, and defensive backs. He was a part of Liberty’s staff that led the Flames to a 48-45 win over Baylor to open the 2017 season. During his time at the school, Liberty transitioned from FCS to FBS.

He is a Fresno State graduate.


Bill McEwen is news director and columnist for GV Wire. He joined GV Wire in August 2017 after 37 years at The Fresno Bee. With The Bee, he served as Opinion Editor, City Hall reporter, Metro columnist, sports columnist and sports editor through the years. His work has been frequently honored by the California Newspapers Publishers Association, including authoring first-place editorials in 2015 and 2016. Bill and his wife, Karen, are proud parents of two adult sons, and they have two grandsons. You can contact Bill at 559-492-4031 or at Send an Email

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