Wayne Wheeler has been named the new head football coach and athletic coordinator at Waltrip High School. Wheeler takes the job after being a Waltrip assistant coach the past four years under head coach Todd Wright, who resigned last month to take the head coaching job at Ellison High School in Killeen ISD. Wheeler has been the team’s offensive coordinator the past four years and the Rams, with their spread offense, displayed one of the most wide-open aerial attacks in the city in 2017, averaging nearly 40 points a game in district en route to a District 24-5A and an undefeated regular season. Wright took the Waltrip job in the spring of 2014, replacing Milton Dailey, who resigned after just two years on the job due to health reasons and passed away from pancreatic cancer before Wright started his first season.
Every year Wright was the Rams head coach, the team’s record got better, culminating with last season’s 8-0 mark that included the 24-5A championship — the school’s first district title in 27 years.
Wright was named the District 24-5A Coach of the Year for the team’s success. The 2017 season was shortened by two games because of Hurricane Harvey and like just about everyone else, the Rams weren’t able to get together and practice for a while due to the conditions. But despite the loss of time together, the red-and-white were always prepared and played very well in every game. Wheeler and Wright are long-time friends and Wheeler was an assistant at Summer Creek when Wright took the job at Waltrip. He hired Wheeler, saying the two had made a pact that when one of them became a head coach, he would hire the other one. Wright was a placekicker at Arkansas in the late 80s and played for head coach Ken Hatfield, who would become the head coach at Rice University in 1994. Wright was the defensive coordinator at Klein Oak, The Woodlands College Park, and New Caney before becoming a head coach for the first time when he was hired at Waltrip. Wright was in charge of the defense for the Rams, leaving the offense to Wheeler. Wright posted a 29-13 overall record with the Rams, including 14 consecutive district wins to start this season. Waltrip currently resides in District 24-5A with eight other Houston ISD schools and will remain part of the District 24-5A for competition when the new school year begins in September.
The Rams are scheduled to open the regular season 7 p.m., August 30 when they travel to Bridgeland High School to face the Bears in their first-ever varsity football game. Bridgeland is the newest high school in Cy-Fair ISD. At Killeen Ellison, Wright replaces Trent Gregory, who announced his retirement from coaching in January.