The Carlisle School Board recently approved the hiring of Brad Slatton as boys basketball coach.
This will be the 14th coaching change for the basketball Bison since 1994-95.
Slatton will arrive at Carlisle this summer after his retirement as superintendent of the Fort Elliott Consolidated Independent School District in Briscoe, Texas, which is in that state’s panhandle and between Amarillo, Texas and Oklahoma City on Interstate 40.
Slatton has many years of experience coaching both boys and girls in Arkansas and Texas.
Carlisle principal and athletic director Brad Horn said Slatton’s experience — including 426 career wins and six honors for conference coach of the year — was attractive to Bison officials.
“Really, all the experience he’s had as an administrator — where he has seen things that we have to deal with — and also his experience on the basketball court,” Horn said. “We’ve had some who didn’t have a lot of experience and traditionally some who did. We’re just trying to get somebody to come in and stay a while.”
Slatton will replace Jason Lowery, who went 8-45 officially in two seasons with the Bison (2-25 in 2015-16 and 6-20 in 2016-17). They had four more wins on the floor but were forced to forfeit four two years ago for use of an ineligible player.
The six wins were the most for a Bison squad since 2013. Lowery resigned a few weeks ago, effective at the end of the school year.
Horn said Slatton’s Arkansas experience included stops at Stamps, Lafayette County, Prairie Grove, El Dorado, Carthage, Leslie and Strong. He took the Carthage boys and El Dorado and Prairie Grove girls to the state tournament.
“He started at Strong in 1990-91 and went from there to Wheeler, Texas, and then back to Arkansas,” Horn said. “He wanted to get back to Arkansas and get back to coaching. Some of them, it’s in their blood.”
Slatton was athletic director and head girls basketball coach at Fort Elliott from 2007-11 and became junior high principal in 2009 before taking the superintendent’s job.
Horn said Slatton would assist girls coach Jonathan Buffalo during games. Buffalo will also work as Slatton’s in-game assistant.