Wilson named head football coach at Chippewa Valley

By: Jonathan Szczepaniak | Fraser-Clinton Chronicle | Published February 21, 2024

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CLINTON TOWNSHIP — Clinton Township Chippewa Valley football will have a new man leading the sidelines this season, and they didn’t have to travel too far to find him.

Following longtime head coach Scott Merchant’s announcement to become the front man for Lawrence Technological University, the Big Reds will turn to assistant coach Terry Wilson to lead the defending co-Macomb Area Conference Red champions.

“Ultimately, it was really made due to Terry’s relationship with the students,” Chippewa Valley athletic director Adam Schihl said. “He’s done a phenomenal job as the assistant coach; he’s done a phenomenal job as the head coach for track, which we hope he continues to work as. It wasn’t an easy decision, but it was definitely warranted that he gets the job.”

Wilson, a history teacher at Chippewa Valley, wears many hats in the school, holding the assistant coach position since 2000 while being the head coach of the boys and girls track and field team since 2012.

He’s a coach the players rally around and will give everything they got each night, and it didn’t take long for the team to show their excitement about Wilson’s promotion.

“As the kids like to say, they got me in my feelings,” Wilson said. “I told them after one of our lifting sessions, and they cheered like they just won the Super Bowl. That made me feel good. I know we’re going to be on the same page.”

A Clinton Township Clintondale graduate, Wilson played collegiate football at Bowling Green State University as a defensive back from 1988-1991 under head coach Gary Blackney.

During his Chippewa Valley tenure, Wilson said he’s been able to learn from each head coach, and said he plans to utilize each of their strengths.

“I learned from each guy that I coached under,” Wilson said. “Mike Carr was very community oriented. Bob Schroeder was very detailed and very organized. Scott Merchant was very intense and very organized also and understood both sides of football. I took a little bit from all three of them, and my college coach, his name is Gary Blackney, he taught us all how to mentally prepare to be successful. We worked a lot on visualization.”

With still a strong supporting cast returning, the Big Reds graduated 34 seniors from a district-winning squad, suffering a regional loss to the would-be Division 1 state champions Southfield A&T last season.

It will be a new-look Chippewa Valley team with a new man at the helm, but Wilson is confident his team will retool and get the job done on the field.

“Losing kids like Andrew (Schuster), Anthony (Wright), Davont’a (Love), Rayshaun (Hester) and Jordan (Byers) would be extremely hard for any team to replace,” Wilson said. “Their leadership and dedication to the program over the past four years is immeasurable. They all will do great things in college and we will have to work to develop the next generation of Big Reds who will have the same impact on our program as they did.”