WESLEY CHAPEL — A familiar face is back at Wesley Chapel High School after being away for over a decade with a local rival.
Former Pasco High School coach Tom McHugh was announced as the new linebackers and quarterbacks coach for the Wildcats, according to Wesley Chapel head coach Anthony Egan via Twitter on Sunday. McHugh was ousted as the lead man of the Pirates after Pasco finished 2-8 in 2018.
McHugh led the Pirates to the state semifinals in 2008 and 2011, in which Pasco came one game away from reaching the Class 3A/Class 5A state championships on two separate occasions after facing Tallahassee Godby and Crawfordville Wakulla. The former Wesley Chapel assistant took over the program back in 2006 after the school dismissed Dale Caparaso, who is currently a head coach at Dixie Hollins High School, as head coach.
The last four seasons, however, have not produced the results the school was well accustomed to in McHugh’s early years as the Pirates suffered four straight losing campaigns and lost four consecutive games to 9-Mile War rival Zephyrhills in the process. Pasco’s demise coincided with success at neighboring schools, as Zephyrhills and Zephyrhills Christian both making the playoffs this past 2018 season.
Replacing McHugh at Pasco is Jason Stokes. Most recently Stokes was the head coach at Lake Region, which now with him accepting the Pasco job, the former will now have a vacancy open. Stokes most notable work came when he was the head man at Gaither High School, in which he led the Cowboys to a district championship and multiple playoff appearances.