NORFOLK, Va. (Norfolk Public Schools) – New Granby High School Principal Tommy Smigiel and new Athletic Director Chris Harris did not have to look far to find Granby’s new Head Football Coach. Both are pleased to announce Coach William “Larry” Archie, Jr. as the program’s leader.
Archie reluctantly stepped down as Granby’s Football Coach last year due to the difficulty of traveling back and forth from Portsmouth each day, where he was a middle school counselor. Fortunately, Coach Archie landed a school counselor position at Madison Alternative School in Norfolk this school year. When Principal Smigiel arrived at Granby, he had the task of finding a new athletic director and football coach. Ultimately, Archie’s reputation and character led Smigiel back to him.
“Everyone who spoke to me about finding the right football coach for Granby pointed to who was there previously. As I learned more about his coaching history, the way he treats his players, his coaching style, and overall philosophy, he aligned with the vision I have for turning around our program,” Smigiel stated.
“You could not ask for a better person to lead our football team,” added Athletic Director Harris. “Not only is he a successful football coach, but he is also a person of great character. We are lucky to have him back at Granby.”
Archie led the Comets to a 2-8 record in his first season at Granby. It included helping the Comets snap a 17-game losing streak. They also won back-to-back games for the first time since 2017. “I am grateful and humbled to return to the Granby High Football Program. I look forward to working with the students, administration, faculty, staff, and alumni, and Comet Community,” said Coach Archie.
Coach Archie and his staff are already working to keep the momentum going from last season, hosting their first conditioning practice last week. While COVID-19 has hampered the start of the athletic season, it hasn’t stopped the spirit of the Granby High Football program and finding the right leader.