Carlyle to take over Buford wrestling program

For the last two years, Rob Carlyle was tutoring under Tom Beuglas and the Archer wrestling program.

Carlyle picked up tips on how to run a program and wants plans to take that to Buford where he accepted the head wrestling job.

"It's just an opportunity to be a head coach again," Carlyle said. "To be under Tom Beuglas, I learned everything I could."

Carlyle will replace Gary McCroskey, who spent the last seven years as Buford's head coach. McCroskey coached 12 state placers, including five state champions during that time. Two-time state champ Chip Ness will be a junior next season.

Norcross head wrestling coach Jason Burton will join the staff as an assistant at Buford.

"Norcross has been really good to me," Burton said. "It was just a situation where the opportunity to teach AP courses and work with Dr. (Banks) Bitterman. Norcross is a great school, is a great community. Buford was just a better fit. They are an extremely impressive school system."

Burton led Norcross to its best dual season this year. The team compiled a 17-15 record, setting the school record for wins. Prior to Burton taking over the program three years ago, the Blue Devils scored two points at the traditional area meet. Norcross placed fifth this season with 129 points, including 12 area placers.

"This is a year I really felt like our program transitioning and the kids were buying in," Burton said. "I'm definitely leaving them in good shape."

Norcross returns 10 of 14 starters next season.

"Norcross is a great school and I love the community to death," Burton said. "Buford was an opportunity I couldn't pass up."

This will be Carlyle's second head wrestling coaching job. He spent the 2009-10 seasons at Jackson where he compiled a 46-20 record. Jackson was the area runner-up in the dual and tractional tournaments in 2009 and he coached three state placers in 2010.

"I'm excited about being a head coach again," Carlyle said.

Carlyle was a state champion wrestler in high school and spent eight years in the military before going to college. He was a two-year starter and captain at Cumberland University in Tennessee.

At Archer, he helped coach six state placers and one state champion. The Tigers were third in the Class AAAAA dual and traditional state tournaments.

"Rob has a good background in wrestling and I think him and I can do some good things with the program," Burton said.