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Program-changer Harden heading to Northeast

Northeast Football Coach Ashley Harden talks about accepting the job in Macon. /(Luke Hetrick, WGXA)

Every stop he's made, Ashley Harden has transformed a football program for the better.

From Jenkins County to Twiggs County, Harden has proven he's a winner. The head coach has a new task ahead of him after accepting the job at Northeast High School Thursday night.

"Northeast is a good program," Harden said. "It's got a lot of tradition that goes along with it."

That tradition has been lost for the Raiders the past few seasons including a 2-8 finish and no postseason appearance in 2017. Harden's expertise not only comes from an x's and o's standpoint, but also a mindset as well.

"We met this morning, I just talked to them about committing and being uncommon," Harden said. "Doing whatever it takes for the program to be successful on the field and off the field. I think they were pretty receptive to that so I'm looking forward to getting started with them and trying to restore some pride in Northeast Football"

Harden has restored pride in every program he's been at, most recently at Twiggs County. In two seasons, the Georgia Southern alum took the Cobras from the bottom of the region to a consistent playoff contender. With a postseason appearance this past year, Harden grew very fond of the Twiggs County program resulting in some cold feet before decision day.

"Honestly the board meeting was last night and up until the board meeting I was still thinking about backing out," Harden said. "I've been at several programs and this was by far the toughest decision I've ever had to make in terms of leaving a program."

The decision however is final and Harden is now a Raider. Northeast will begin their off-season training next week.

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