Bell answers call as new HP football head coach

The high school High Prairie Renegades and the bantam High Prairie Outlaws welcome a new head coach for the 2023 season. Left-right, are Outlaw players Harlan Rotenburger and Trenton Wait Radstaak, Outlaws’ and Renegades’ new head coach Tyler Bell and Renegade players Keanu Vance and Levi Langevin. Bell kicked off his new role as spring training started May 15.

Richard Froese
South Peace News

A new head coach has been named for two High Prairie football teams just before spring training starts.

Tyler Bell welcomes the opportunity to be the top coach for the high school High Prairie Renegades and the bantam High Prairie Outlaws.

“My love for football and leading young men and women in our community is the main reason to take on the role,” says Bell, who joined the coaching staff for both teams in the 2022 season.

Under the High Prairie and Area Football Society, both teams have the same coaching staff, a unique situation for two teams from the same community playing at different levels.

“I am so grateful to have the opportunity and to have the support from the football society, recommending myself for the position I accepted without question,” Bell says.

Last season, he focused his time as an assistant coach for the offence and quarterbacks.

A quarterback in his high school years in northern Ontario for many years, he is eager to use his passions and skills to further develop football in the community.

After playing, he coached football for many years.

“I love the game,” Bell says.

“I had to hang up my cleats many years ago and I’m excited to coach just like I use to when I hit the field as a player.”

He learned many lessons that he is passing on the younger players.

“I received an extensive injury that brought me to the hospital but I recovered and continued to play for six more years after that,” Bell says.

“I stress injuries like this to our players in an attempt to keep them as safe as possible while playing a contact sport.”

Others on the coaching staff include former player Marissa Bull – Van De Ligt, Jonathan Steckly, Dale Anderson and Sandy Laughlin.

Spring training started May 15 and players are gearing up for the league jamborees in Grande Prairie for the high school Mighty Peace Football League on June 7 and for the Peace Country Bantam Football League on June 25.

Both teams continue to build their rosters for the fall season.

“We would still love to see more players hit the field and we continue to actively recruit for the upcoming regular season,” Bell says.

“Even if they’re not sure about playing, we encourage young men and women to attend a practice and just observe.

“I am a full supporter of the friendships and long-term family-like relationships that are built.”

After a summer break, the Renegades and Outlaws resume training in mid-August with the season set to start in early September.

Both teams practise Mondays and Wednesdays at E.W. Pratt School field from 5-7 p.m.

For more information, attend a practice or read the Facebook page of the High Prairie and Area Football Society.

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