Longtime Branson football coach Steve Hancock announced he was returning to the Pirate football program late last week.

Nearly six years after leaving his head coaching position at Branson High School, Steve Hancock is returning to the coaching staff for Pirates football. 

Branson football announced Hancock’s return online. He will be joining the staff as an assistant on the offensive side of the ball. Current head coach Anthony Hays said Hancock’s main role will be coaching the offensive line, but there is also the possibility of him coordinating the offense on some of the sub-varsity levels.

“He brings a lot of value to the staff no matter where I put him,” Hays said.

Hancock originally left his position as head coach to take on a coaching position at Springfield Catholic. He spent 28 years coaching Branson football and finished with a record of 193-102.

Hays said that Hancock was actually one of the first people he called when he was looking into the head coaching position at Branson. That being said, Hancock and Hays have been friends for a number of years. Hays said that he would often mention the possibility of Hancock returning to Branson to Hancock’s daughter who works at Branson High School.

“I told her on several occasions, ‘when you think your dad might be ready to retire at Springfield Catholic and coach back at Branson, just let me know,’” Hays said. “Sure enough she said ‘hey, my dad is kind of contemplating his future,’ so I gave him a call.”

As Hancock is still living in Branson, he spent time commuting to Springfield Catholic. He said the opportunity to return to Branson seemed to be the perfect fit for him and his family. 

And he said the fact that he’s returning to the staff is pretty special. 

“I spent a lot of years coaching at Branson,” Hancock said. “So I’ve still got a lot of black and red in my blood. It’s kind of neat to be able to have the opportunity to come around, and it’s kind of like a full circle.”

 Branson’s athletic director David Large said it’s always nice to bring in a coach as an assistant who has the knowledge and experience such as Hancock. He added it’s something he’d like to see across the board for Branson sports.

“There’s just so many things they’ve experienced and done that they can provide and help with the program,” Large said.

He also mentioned how well respected Hancock is in the community. 

“He’s the kind of guy you think of when you think of Branson football,” Large said. “We should be bringing him home, when you think of it like that. This is where he belongs.”

After leaving his position in 2014 to take over as head coach at Springfield Catholic, Hancock told the Branson Tri-Lakes News it was bittersweet as he always thought he would retire in Branson. 

He now hopes that he’s able to spend his last chapter of coaching at Branson.

“I figure this is probably my last chapter of coaching,” Hancock said. “To be able to come back home and do it here in Branson makes it pretty special.”

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