Following what was said to be a mutual decision, school leaders on Tuesday confirmed they have opened up the head football coaching position Cedric Dargan has held the past two years at Knightdale High.
“After several discussions, Cedric Dargan and I have mutually agreed that we will reopen the position of head football coach at Knightdale High School of Collaborative Design,” the school’s principal, Dr. Jim Argent, said in a statement. “We will search for the best person to lead the team into the future.”
Argent said Dargan will retain his position as a physical education teacher at Knightdale.
Dargan on Wednesday indicated the move is related to the school’s transition from Knightdale High School to the Knightdale High School of Collaborative Design, which took effect at the start of the 2015-16 school year.
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“Basically, it’s what Dr. Argent said – we mutually agreed to go our separate ways right now,” Dargan said. “When I was hired, it was to be the head coach at Knightdale High School, and I was the right fit for Knightdale High School.
“We pretty much opened up a brand new school and I felt it was right for a new school with new administration to be able to choose a football coach that will be a good fit for this school.”
Dargan said he was told he is more than welcome to reapply for the position, and that he intends to do so.
“I think I owe that to the kids to do that,” he said.
Wake County Schools posted the open position online on Wednesday, June 1.
Dargan is a native of Jacksonville, N.C., where he played football for White Oak High School. He went on to play as running back for Duke University for five seasons before graduating in 2005.
He began his coaching career in 2006 leading the junior varsity team at Middle Creek High before he first came to Knightdale to serve as head JV coach for the 2007 and 2008 seasons. After a one-year stint as offensive assistant coach at N.C. Central University, Dargan returned to Knightdale in 2010.
Dargan called the Knights’ defense until being named head coach in 2014. He also served as offensive coordinator during his two years as head coach.
Dargan took over a program that reached an all-time high with several firsts in 2013 – winning the Greater Neuse River 4A Conference title, defeating Garner and reaching the third round of the state playoffs.
His two-year record at Knightdale was 9-14 overall and 4-10 in the GNRC. Last year, the Knights looked to be a league title contender again as they started 6-2 before finishing the season with four straight losses, including a first-round playoff loss at New Hanover.