Penn Hills grad, 20, gets early start on football coaching career

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Friday, February 21, 2020 | 2:25 PM


In recent weeks, Jayvin Turner has been reaching out to WPIAL athletic directors via email to gauge their interest in hiring a young assistant coach for their football program.

One of those programs was Riverview, which recently hired Carlynton alum Trevor George as head coach.

After his information was passed along to George, Turner found himself with a job offer to be an assistant coach for the defensive backs.

The 2018 Penn Hills graduate was too eager to sit on making a decision and gave George a call the following morning to notify him that he accepted the job.

Turner announced his new role via his personal Twitter account Feb. 13.

“I want to bring a shot of energy every day,” Turner said. “I can relate to those kids. I’m going to teach them as much as I can. Honestly, I’m here to make the team better and help revamp the program.”

“We all know they haven’t won more than two games in a season in the last decade. Every coach on the staff is to keep improving day by day. I want to come in and work with my group. All the coaches are going to put their brains together to turn this around as best as they can.”

George, a 2017 Baldwin Wallace alum, was the offensive coordinator at Ambridge in 2017, wide receivers coach at Carolina Forest in Myrtle Beach in 2018 and a general assistant coach at Blackhawk in 2019.

George, who’s taking over a team that finished 2-7 last season, can relate to Turner as he is a young coach trying to navigate the coaching ranks and wanted to provide Turner an opportunity to prove himself.

“I want him to know I do appreciate him for taking a chance on me,” Turner said. “He mentioned one reason why he’s doing this for me because he was at my stage and he knows what it’s like to be young and hungry.

“Not a lot of coaches in the area are going to take a chance on a 20-year old with not much playing experience.”

Most recently, Turner has been a volunteer defensive backs coach for three seasons at Baldwin.

Turner started his coaching career as the head coach of the Pittsburgh NFL 9U Flag Football team in 2016 and 2017. The last two seasons, Turner has been the head coach of the Pittsburgh Elite 10U Flag Travel team.

This season, Pittsburgh Elite was ranked No. 1 in the country out of 800 teams and won three tournaments — the Mid-Atlantic Shootout, Battle in Bethlehem and PA Gridiron Wars. The team lost in the quarterfinals at nationals.

Turner was the offensive coordinator of the Baldwin Youth 9U team in 2018 and Baldwin 11U team in 2019.

Becoming a football coach became a passion for Turner, a former wide receiver and cornerback, after his playing career was cut short after suffering a concussion playing the sport in seventh grade.

His coaching career started with flag football after Erik Cooper, the commissioner and founder of Pittsburgh Elite, approached him about the idea of coaching one of the teams.

“I appreciate everything he has done for me,” Turner said. “He’s a big reason why I started my coaching career. If he didn’t bring me on five years ago, I don’t think I would be coaching right now.”

Turner will continue to coach the Pittsburgh Elite 11U team for one final season. They had tryouts Feb. 23. Their season lasts from March until January.

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