Will Pouncey: Leading Highland Home’s Football Program with passion and purpose

Published 1:08 am Sunday, July 16, 2023

By Haley Mitchell Godwin

Highland Home School (HHS) has long been known for its strong athletic programs, and one man who has played a significant role in shaping the school’s football program is head coach Will Pouncey.  A proud 2006 HHS alumnus himself, with a deep-rooted passion for his community, Pouncey’s journey has come full circle, as he now stands at the helm of his alma mater’s football program, aiming for continued success and creating a legacy of mentorship and inspiration.

With a notable background and a deep passion for the game, Pouncey has become a beloved figure in the Highland Home community according to Adrian Daniels, HHS athletic director, who said Pouncey is a dedicated coach that is not just leading the Squadron to victories on the football field but is also making a profound impact on the lives of his players and students off the field.

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“Not only is Coach Pouncey a mentor on the field but he also mentors students just on a daily basis,” Daniels said. “Will has been coaching for 14 years, 9 of those here, and has always been there for our students. He has a heart of gold and truly loves Highland Home School. Under his leadership the boys went to first round playoffs during his second year as head coach and they have been to the fourth round of playoffs the past two years. Will has taken players to football camps, established youth league football camps, and has maintained the Squadron Tradition. It is such a wonderful feeling having one of your very own leading in the way that he does. I am so glad that I have him as my head football coach.”

After graduating high school, Pouncey attended Troy University, where he worked closely with the football team as an equipment manager and assistant to coach Neil Brown during his freshman year.Pouncey earned a bachelor’s degree in physical education and today, he not only serves as the head football coach at Highland Home but also as the high school’s physical education teacher. 

Pouncey said he values the relationships he builds with his students and players, seeing the positive impact that coaches had on his own life during his high school years. His experiences with all coaches, have shaped his approach to mentorship, as he continuously learns from every individual that crosses his path.

“I grew up loving the game and I now love the interactions I get to have with students and players,” Pouncey said. “I really appreciate the relationships I get to build with them, and I think about how much my high school football career meant to me and how it positively affected my development. My parents of course had a huge impact on me, but I had coaches through and through that were positive and I have enjoyed every coach I’ve ever played for and coached with. I always just try to learn little by little from every coach and player that crosses my path.”

Pouncey’s personal life is intricately woven into the fabric of Highland Home. He is married to Kasey Pouncey, who serves as HHS Future Business Leaders of America adviser and business education teacher. They have two children, Mac and Leighton, who attend the school, creating a strong sense of family within the community.

Pouncey recently faced a health scare that shed light on the depth of character within his team. During his hospitalization at UAB Hospital, Pouncey’s blood platelets and numbers reached dangerous levels. The scarcity of platelets in the city prompted his players to organize a platelet drive, displaying their compassion and understanding that life extends beyond the football field. Though he ultimately didn’t require their donations, the selflessness exhibited by his players reflects the values Pouncey instills in them.

This health scare has also provided Pouncey with a renewed perspective on life. The coach said as he faced the possibility of cancer treatment, he found himself contemplating his family and the importance of cherishing each day. This experience has deepened his appreciation for every moment and reinforced his commitment to being a positive influence in the lives of his players.

As Pouncey enters his fifth season as head football coach, expectations remain high for Highland Home’s program. With a solid foundation of returning players and a strong sense of community, Pouncey said the team is poised for continued success. Pouncey emphasizes that each year brings a new chapter, and he looks forward to the unique story that this season will unfold.

“We have a lot of players coming  back from last year’s team that have made an impact in the last couple of years regarding our success,” Pouncey said. “So, we have a lot of potential and I say ‘potential’ because nothing’s guaranteed. We have to go out there and earn it. You have to work for everything. We kind of have a target on our back as far as being successful, but we worked hard to get where we are. We know we will get the best game from all of our opponents, but we have a great, very strong, mature group that knows what it takes to be good. They have been working really hard. What we preach in the program is that the way you do anything is the way you do everything, with all you have. I’m really proud of them on the field and for what they do in the classroom.”