It didn’t take the Carthage Bulldogs very long to find their new baseball coach, and they didn’t have to look very far to find him.
Beckville Baseball Coach Jason Causey was approved by the Carthage ISD as the next Carthage coach at Monday’s board meeting. He replaces John Goodwin, who was named the new Carthage Junior High School assistant principal last month.
“Jason Causey is a great coach who has won a state championship and also has coached 11 years at the collegiate level,” Carthage Athletic Director Scott Surratt said. “He will be a great asset to Carthage ISD.”
“When Coach Surratt asked me if I’d be interested in the job, it was just something I felt I needed to do,” said Causey, who posted a 139-32-2 record at Beckville in six seasons as well as a 36-9 record in the playoffs. “But it was a very tough decision to leave Beckville. At the end of the day it was too good of an opportunity to pass up. To have lived here the last 15 years and not have to move was too much to pass up.
“I spent a lot of time helping to build that facility (Jim Reeves Memorial Stadium) when I was at Panola before. It’ll be nice to get to use it now.”
With the 2018 Class 3A state title on his resume, Causey should fit in just fine at a Carthage baseball program that has three state crowns — 1990, 2005 and 2009 — along with the seven state titles in football.
“The baseball team has such a good history of competing for state championships,” Causey said. “I’m looking forward to building on that and help continue its success. Everyone says Coach Surratt is an awesome athletic director to work to work for. I’m looking forward to working with him as well.
“I’m also looking for continued support of the community. Carthage loves its Bulldogs.”
Causey is from Baker, Louisiana and played at Nichols State, Southwest Mississippi Community College and Lyon College before getting a bachelor’s degree in history at Lyon.
He was an assistant at Lyon for one year, a graduate assistant at Northwest Missouri State for a year and at Henderson State for a year.
He got his master’s degree at Henderson and was an assistant coach for nine years at Panola College before taking over at Beckville.
He and his wife Nikki have three children, Bryce, 20, Canon, 8, and Ayson, 3.
Deciding to leave Beckville was a tough decision for Causey.
“I want to thank the Beckville ISD for giving me an opportunity to be their baseball coach six years ago,” he said. “They were some great people to work for, they gave me an opportunity to grow; and a chance to work with some great kids. I’m always going to be a Bearcat,
“It was a rough decision, but it felt like God was leading us in a different direction.”
Causey and the Bearcats played in one of the last athletic contests of the 2019-20 school year before the UIL and the powers that be shut down the season. The coach didn’t think that’s how it would end.
“I thought we’d be out for a couple of weeks, then come back and make the playoffs,” he said. “I thought we were good enough to go a couple rounds deep. I am glad I didn’t have any seniors.
“If that would have happened maybe I would have wanted to stay. But with the time away from everything with the family, we were kind of able to press reset. That’s not something you you usually get a chance to do.”
Other than baseball, Causey isn’t sure of any other assignments he will have. But he does admit he doesn’t know what he has coming back for the Bulldogs.
“It was still early enough in the season that I didn’t know that much about them,” he confessed. “I think that’s going to be good. Everybody’s going to start on a clean slate with me.”