High school football: Former UA player Heavner, coach at Tucson's Santa Rita High School, resigns

2013-04-11T00:00:00Z High school football: Former UA player Heavner, coach at Tucson's Santa Rita High School, resignsDaniel Gaona Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
April 11, 2013 12:00 am  • 

Kris Heavner has resigned as coach of the Santa Rita High School football team after one season.

Heavner, 28, told TUSD district athletic director Herman House late Tuesday night that he will be the next head coach at Scottsdale Horizon.

"He personally called me to tell me," House said. "I thought he was a very good young coach and had a lot of potential to do some great things. When you get an opportunity like a Horizon position, it's a no-brainer."

Horizon, which went 8-3 last year and appeared in the Division II state tournament, has not announced the move. School officials were unavailable for comment Wednesday.

Santa Rita went 2-8 last fall, Heaver's first and only season with the team.

Behind the scenes, Heavner helped develop senior quarterback Gary Uselton into Southern Arizona's most prolific passer. Uselton threw for 2,038 yards, threw for more than 300 yards four times and had four games with multiple touchdowns. He was named honorable mention on the Star's All-Southern Arizona team.

In the final game of the season, Uselton completed 14 of 27 passes for 345 yards and four touchdowns. He was intercepted once.

Heavner's playing and coaching experience played a role in Uselton's success. Heavner played at the UA for four years and spent another four years working as an aide to coach Mike Stoops.

Heavner was not retained when Stoops was fired.

House called Heavner's departure a huge loss for Santa Rita but said the coach has a bright future. House is hoping to appoint a new coach as soon as possible with spring drills not far away.

"He regrets leaving Santa Rita, but you can't pass up that opportunity," House said.

Contact high school sports coordinator Daniel Gaona at dgaona@azstarnet.com or 807-7761. On Twitter @DanielGaona13

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