Posted: 12:14 pm Friday, May 29th, 2009

Former Dolphin Keith Byars will coach Boca football 

By Jason Lieser

Boca Raton’s two-month search for a head football coach ended Friday with the announcement that assistant coach Keith Byars won the job.

The runner-up was Larry Green, who has been the team’s interim coach the past two months.


Byars replaces Eddie Giersbrook, who was forced out amid a Florida High School Athletic Association into recruiting allegations. After Giersbrook left, the school received about 160 applications for the job from all over the country.

For the news story on the hire, click here.

Roughly 20 candidates from that pool were interviewed, including at least four internal prospects, and Green and Byars emerged as the two finalists. Principal Geoff McKee and athletic director Bill Massey held one final round of interviews this morning before selecting Byars.

Byars is a former first-round draft pick and Pro Bowl running back with a commanding presence. He played 13 NFL seasons, including four with the Miami Dolphins.

Massey maintained optimism throughout the hiring process that the new coach would retain the current assistants, which could now include Green. If Green is willing to take a subservient role, he could be a valuable mediator and peacekeeper for Boca Raton during this transition.

Byars replaces Eddie Giersbrook, who was forced out amid a Florida High School Athletic Association into recruiting allegations.

Giersbrook was asked to resign in late March during a Florida High School Athletic Association investigation into possible recruiting violations centering around quarterback Eddie Sullivan.

Sullivan played at Park Vista as a sophomore before transferring to Boca Raton as a junior, and Park Vista filed a complaint with the FHSAA in November. The investigation is ongoing and could result in a variety of penalties including a fine, a post-season ban and illegally recruited players being ruled ineligible.