FARMINGTON — The postseason accolades continue to roll in for the state-champion Farmington High football team.
Head coach Gary Bradley was named the New Mexico High School Coaches Association football coach of the year on Friday.
"It's an honor coming from the coaches," Bradley said. "All the credit doesn't really lay on one guy though. It goes to the players and the all the coaches on the staff."
Bradley's faith in a tough defense and a strong ground game carried the Scorpions to a 12-1 record and the top of the 4A football mountain.
"The biggest thing is he believes in what he does," said FHS defensive coordinator Jeff Dalton. "When you see he believes, it makes you believe and the kids buy in. He always says there's no magical formula to success, just hard work, and he's right."
Dalton said Bradley's relationship with his assistants was important for the team's success.
"We have a great relationship. We're all friends outside of football, and we know that when we get into the office, it's all business," he said.
The assistants on the staff played an integral part of the Scorpions success this season, Bradley said.
"We have seven guys that teach here at Farmington High and that's big. I'd put that number up against any other school in the state. Their hard work is the reason were here," Bradley said. "We also have three others who don't teach here, but worked just as hard to help the team."
The players on the team see Bradley as someone they can trust and that trust went a long way in building the team.
"He's always focused on football, so he comes off with a tough exterior but he's always concerned about every one of us whether he shows it or not," said FHS senior Tierney Staley. "He meant so much to us. He was a man of integrity. What he preached, he believed deeply. I know for me, he wasn't a boss, he was a leader."
Bradley said building that belief within the team is one of the things he strives to do from the opening day of the season.
"You definitely want to have that trust within the locker room and stick together through thick and thin," he said. "Everybody goes through some adversity during the year, but if you stay together and get a couple of breaks, then you can come out on top."
Bradley knows that the award wouldn't be possible without the players and said the results this season showed all the hard work they put in throughout the season.
"This is the most fun year I've been a part of. To have that maturity from the team meant we didn't have to coach effort and break down situations," he said. "We could just give them something and let them go. They played good football and it was fun watching that."