Salary and Career Info for a High School Football Coach

High school football coaches require some formal education. Learn about the education, job duties and certification requirements to see if this is the right career for you.

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High school football coaches teach high school students about football, and coordinate the high school football team. This could include running try outs, practices, establishing a game schedule, encouraging team spirit, and all other aspects of running a football program. Many high school football coaches also teach, which requires at least a bachelor's degree and certification for public schools.

Essential Information

People who have a passion for football and who enjoy working with kids might like being a high school football coach. They are responsible for teaching all aspects of football, conditioning and preparing for games. Many high school athletic coaches are also full-time high school academic teachers. To work as a teacher, a bachelor's degree and certification are required. Even coaches not employed as teachers usually possess a minimum of a bachelor's degree. Coaches generally work outside during the evening hours and weekends. They are also required to travel frequently to attend games.

Required Education Bachelor's degree
Other Requirements Certification; previous experience (sometimes)
Projected Job Growth (2014-2024) 6% (for coaches and scouts)*
Mean Salary (2015) $40,050 (for coaches and scouts)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), coaches and scouts in general earned a mean annual wage of $40,050 in May 2015; this includes coaches who are not licensed public school teachers. However, many football coaches also are high school teachers, and public school teachers generally get paid quite a bit more. The BLS found that high school teachers made an average salary of $60,440 in May 2015.

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Career Information

High school football coaches organize and train players for football competitions at the secondary school level. They design training sessions to build and assess players' strength, endurance and technique. They also evaluate the team as a whole, determining its strengths and weaknesses, and adjust their lineup accordingly. High school football coaches design strategies and evaluate opposing teams. They are charged with instilling a sense of teamwork and sportsmanship in their players.


To coach in a public high school, one typically needs to be certified; however, requirements vary by state. Private schools don't always have this requirement. To gain state certification, candidates usually must be 18 or older, have a current cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) card and pass a written examination. Many states also require that candidates possess prior experience in a camp or school.

Coaches also can pursue voluntary certification though the National High School Coaches Association (NHSCA). To obtain certification, a coach must pass a 7-part written examination.

Job Outlook

As of 2015, coaches held 224,110 positions, according to the BLS. The number of jobs for coaches was expected to rise by 6% from 2014-2024.

High school football coaches are responsible for coordinating the football program and instilling their knowledge of football in their players through practices, games, and assessing the team as a whole and as individual players. Certification is typically required to coach. Job growth in this field is expected to be about average during the next decade.

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