ALEDO, Texas — One of the most decorated high school football coaches in Texas is calling it a career.
Aledo's Tim Buchanan, an eight-time state champion, announced Friday he plans to retire at the end of the school year after having been the driving force behind the Bearcats' record-setting program for three decades.
Robby Jones, a longtime Aledo assistant and offensive coordinator, has been promoted to head coach, according to the school district.
Steve Wood, the district's athletics director who also served as Aledo's head coach after Buchanan initially stepped down in 2013, is also planning to retire.
Wood, while coaching the Bearcats from 2014-2018, won three state championships.
"What I will remember most about our 30 years in Aledo are the great kids we've helped turn into productive men and women in our community," Buchanan said.
Said Wood, "I have so many memories and proud moments from 42 years in education, and these last 21 years in Aledo have been unforgettable. What we have been able to accomplish is remarkable, and I have enjoyed being a part of it as an assistant coach, a head coach and an athletics director."
Buchanan led Aledo to the school's 11th UIL football state title in a dominating 52-14 win over College Station in the Class 5A Division I title game in December. Aledo's 11 state titles are the most among 11-man programs in the state, two more than Katy and Carthage.
With the most recent Aledo title, Buchanan improved to 8-0 in state championship contests. His eight titles are just one behind the UIL 11-man records shared by the late Gordon Wood and Carthage's Scott Surratt. At Aledo, Buchanan's career record was 281-58-3.
Buchanan began building the Bearcats in 1993, and what an architect he turned out to be.
He notched his first state title in 1998, and ripped off four more before stepping down after the 2013 state championship to become the Aledo ISD Athletic Director.
"I left the sideline because the job of head football coach and athletic director at Aledo had gotten too big to do a great job at both, so I gave up the head coaching position," Buchanan said.
He decided to retire in 2018, but that didn't last long. He returned to the sidelines in 2019, winning at title that year and again in 2020 before winning championship No. 8 in December.
"It didn't take long for me to realize I really missed coaching so when I got a chance in 2019 to come back as head coach, I jumped on the opportunity. I had four unforgettable years, getting to work with hundreds of really great kids, but almost 63 years old, it's time to retire," he said.
Now Buchanan says he's looking forward to spending more time with his wife Rebecca and getting to go to the deer lease in the fall.
Buchanan was recently honored by "Dave Campbell's Texas Football" magazine, naming him one of the top ten football coaches in Texas. In December, Buchanan was elected to the Texas High School Coaches Association Hall of Honor. He will be inducted in a ceremony in July.
He's been an integral part of what makes Aledo great and had this message as he takes a final bow: "To the parents and kids in Aledo: Keep being Bearcats and Ladycats! Which means keep working harder today than you did yesterday."
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