MORGANTOWN, W.Va. The Clay-Battelle Cee Bees have hired their next head football coach.

The Monongalia County Board of Education has hired Aaron LaPoe. He takes over for Ryan Wilson, who has served as the head coach for the past 29 years. LaPoe has been on various coaching staffs, but this will be his first time being a head coach at the high school level.

“I feel like Spiderman,” said LaPoe. “Coach Wilson as Uncle Ben, and telling me the famous quote, ‘With great power comes great responsibility.’ So, I feel like there’s a big responsibility on my shoulders,” he said.

LaPoe graduated from Clay-Battelle High School in 2004. He broke the school all-time rushing yards record, and that record still holds to this day. He went to West Virginia University as a preferred walk-on. He then transferred to Fairmont State and played with the Falcons for three years. He started as a middle school coach at South Middle School. LaPoe then moved on to Capital High School and served on the coaching staff for 5 years, including a state championship in 2014 and a runner-up in 2015.

Coach Wilson played a huge role in his upbringing as a coach.

“He was a powerful role model to me,” said LaPoe. “I would not be where I am today. I would not be the father or husband that I am today if it weren’t for Coach Wilson. When people ask what I want to do when I leave high school, I simply say I want to be like him. I just want a beautiful family; I want to live in a brick house; and I want to coach football,” he added.

LaPoe is taking over a Cee Bee’s side that has enthusiasm that they can turn around the bad fortunes of last year. While the Cee Bees had a 3-7 record, four of those losses were decided by two scores or less. However, the players and community outreach were overwhelming in their support for Coach LaPoe to take over.

“I felt led in that direction by people in the community. I prayed a lot and talked with my wife. She’s now in her first week as the physical therapist in Blacksville, and then this job opened up. The timing could not be more perfect.

Things have drastically changed since LaPoe was a player at Clay-Battelle. Now, with the one-time transfer rule, along the way, the four-classification system favors the Cee Bee’s as well. Only four state champions are returning to single-A (twice Weirton Madonna, once Wahama, and Magnolia).

“Speaking on transfers, when I first got there with Coach Carpenter, goal one was to keep our own kids,” said LaPoe. “Clay-Battelle is somewhat insulated from that. I do still feel like I need to recruit my own hallways. Not necessarily transferring, but just getting them on the field, he added.

“As for the four-class system, I think it’s great for us smaller schools,” LaPoe said. “I think new coaches come in and say our goal is to win a state championship, but the fact is that’s never been done in Clay-Battelle football. Now though, with this four-class system, I think that is the goal,” he added.

Lupoe’s first game will be at home on August 30th against Hundred.