After 41 years, Jeter bidding Crossett goodbye

Former coach Allen Jeter, greeting Superintendent of Schools Gary Williams, was honored along with two other former Crossett Coaches, Bobby Richardson and Bobby McMahen, at Friday’s Homecoming game. Even after retiring from coaching in 2012, Jeter has continued to work for the Crossett School District as a bus driver. He is now leaving after 41 years in the area to be closer to family.

After four decades with the Crossett School District, Allen Jeter is hanging up his cap and heading out for the last time.

The Crossett School Board accepted Jeter’s resignation at its board meeting Monday night.

“This is the first time in more 40 years that Allen Jeter hasn’t been an employee of the Crossett School District,” school board member Eddie Goodson said after the meeting.

Jeter and his wife, Carla, moved to Crossett in 1977, both fresh out of Harding college. Jeter, who was originally from Monticello, said they didn’t plan to stay in Crossett long, but 41 years later, they are just now moving away.

“We can’t say enough good about Crossett, we love Crossett and we always consider it home,” Jeter said.

Jeter coached the Crossett Eagle baseball team until 2008, and was an Eagle assistant football coach until 2012.

Jeter said he was employed under seven different superintendants and five different Eagle football coaches.

Jeter was in Crossett during the years that the Crossett School and the Crossett Athletic Program were both “flying high.”

“Crossett was really something, they called us the University of Crossett,” Jeter said.

Jeter said the football program in the early 1980s was tremendous, and out of 72 games, they only lost nine under head coach Ed Johnson.

As head baseball coach, Jeter led the Eagles to their first ever state championship in baseball.

“Yes, it takes good ball players to succeed, but without a coach like Coach Jeter — and I can’t leave out Coach (Jeff) Senn — it’s just a bunch of kids who enjoy the game,” said Bryson Brooks, a member of the 1993 championship team.

Jeter’s former players said they can’t say enough about how much Jeter loved the game, and they remember his catch phrase as “fellas, fellas, fellas.”

Jeter said he loved all of his players and students and will be leaving with fantastic memories of his 41 years in Crossett, but his favorite memories come from the 1997 baseball season.

The Crossett Eagles won another championship that year, but Jeter’s son Brandon on shortstop made the season even sweeter.

“Getting to see your own kids win is just awesome, it’s really something,” Jeter said.

Both of Jeter’s children grew up and graduated in Crossett. His daughter Allison graduated in 2002 and his son Brandon in 1998.

Jeter said Crossett will always have a special place in their hearts.

“People have negative to say about Crossett, but I promise it’s a great place to live, it’s a hard place to leave,” Jeter said.

Though Jeter retired from coaching and teaching in 2012, he has been employed a bus driver for the last six years. Now he and his wife are relocating to Nashville to spend more time with their grandkids.

Jeter was honored on the football field at Friday night’s football game with two other Crossett coaches, Bobby Richardson and Bobby McMahen. The three have served a combined number of 105 years to the Crossett School District.

Jeter said he has great memories of coaching with Richardson and McMahen and considers all of his fellow coaches to be like family.

“You can’t spend that much time with someone and not feel like they are a part of the family,” Jeter said.

Jeter said he has coached with a lot of great men over the years and watched a lot of really good athletes go through the Crossett program and wishes nothing but the best to the Crossett Eagles and the Crossett School District.

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