Matt Boone Lamar

Matt Boone addresses Lamar faculty and boosters Tuesday morning at a press conference introducing him as the school's new athletic director. Boone spent the past three years as head baseball coach at Quitman.

Quitman baseball coach Matt Boone has been hired as athletic director at Lamar.

Boone spent the past three years coaching the Panthers and was an assistant coach for the Newton County baseball team prior to that. He reunites with Lamar baseball coach Robert Westbrook, with whom Boone worked at Newton County under Cougars baseball coach Wyatt Tullos. 

At first, Boone was under consideration for a position on Westbrook’s staff before the athletic director position came open. Boone replaces Shane Adams, who is transitioning into a different role at Lamar as director of facilities.

“Me and Coach Westbrook are pretty tight,” Boone said. “One thing led to another, and here we are.”

Being an athletic director has been a goal of Boone’s for a while, though he admitted he didn’t expect to become one this quickly in his career.

“I wanted to step away from the field for a little bit,” Boone said. “I love athletics in general, not just baseball, so it’s a chance to be hands-on with all athletics and be around all of the sports.”

Leigh Ann Ballou, Lamar’s head of school, said she’s eager to work with Boone and continue the school’s commitment to athletics.

“Matt Boone has a lot of enthusiasm for sports, and with our athletics here on campus we know how important it is to continue to grow,” Ballou said. “He has a vision, and we’re going to create that vision together for the students of our school.”

In an introductory press conference Tuesday morning, Boone said his goal was to develop good character in Lamar’s student athletes and compete for championships. While he’ll miss coaching baseball, Boone is looking forward to attending games as a spectator.

“It’ll be a transition for sure, and I’m not closing the door on ever returning to baseball,” Boone said. “It’ll be an opportunity to watch practice and go to games and not have to worry about decisions made during the games.”

Boone will finish out the season as baseball coach at Quitman before starting at Lamar full-time in June.

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