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Northview 2017 Coaching Staff

James Thomson - Varisty Head Coach

Coach Thomson comes to Northview High School as the new Head Coach from UCLA, where he spent the 2016 season as an Offensive Analyst working with the Running Backs. 

Prior to UCLA, Thomson served as a very successful head coach in the state of Florida. He compiled a 25-3 record while head coach of the Gainesville High School Purple Hurricanes. In 2012, he led GHS to a 14-1 record with the only loss coming in the 6A state championship game. GHS was ranked as high as #6 in the nation and Thomson was named "Florida Dairy Farmers 6A Coach of the Year" as well as nominated for national coaching awards. 

From 2004-2007, Coach Thomson had the chance to serve as an assistant coach under his former high school coaches at Edgewater High School in Orlando.  While there, Edgewater collected four District Titles, four Metro Championships and played in the 6A State Championship game in 2004.

In 2008, Thomson accepted the Offensive Coordinator position at Jones High School.  The new staff immediately turned around a 1-9 team to a 7-3 record and playoff appearance.  This success helped land Thomson his first head coaching job at the age of 25 making him the youngest head coach in the state of Florida.

In the past 10 years, Thomson has coached camps at over 12 Universities around the country as well as the "All-Poly" camps in Utah (2009-2016) and "Fa'a Samoa" camps in Pago Pago, Samoa (2011 and 2013).  He also had the opportunity to intern with the Jacksonville Jaguars mini camps during the summer of 2008. 

Since 2010, Coach Thomson has worked for Nike helping organize the "Nike Coach of the Year Clinic" in Orlando, FL. He has also spoke numerous times at over 13 different clinics around the country. 

Thomson has served as an assistant in two national all-star games and was named head coach for the East for the "Central Florida All-Star Game" in 2014. 

2017-Current:             Head Coach                            Northview High School

2016:                           Offensive Analyst                   UCLA

2013-2015:                  Head Coach                            Deland High School

2011-2012:                  Head Coach                            Gainesville High School

2010:                           Head Coach                            Cornerstone Charter Academy

2008-2009:                  Offensive Coordinator           Jones High School

2004-2007:                  Head JV/QB Coach                 Edgewater High School




2011_KX4B0033_32.jpgGary McCoy-Varsity Defensive Line Coach
Coach McCoy has been a football coach for 24 years and 2017 will be his 13th season at Northview High School. Coach McCoy coaches defensive line, and has been a fixture in the strength training of team in all of his seasons at Northview.

Gary was a defensive end four-year letterman and starter at North Carolina A&T State University. After graduating, he coached in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida for three years and then at North Springs High School for nine years prior to coming to Northview. Coach McCoy teaches physical education, health, and weight training at Northview High School. He is married to Verneeta McCoy, and has one son, Denzel who is a graduate of Northview High School and Georgia Tech.


2011_KX4B0035_34.jpgTom Kratowicz- Defensive Assisant

2017 will be Coach Tom Kratowicz’s eighth year as a football coach at Northview. He has coached multiple positions, initially serving on the offensive side of the ball with offensive line, and later moving to the defensive side of the ball, coaching linebackers and defensive backs.  Coach K has served in the past as JV Head Coach and as Varsity Assistant Offensive Coordinator.

Coach Kratowicz grew up in Gwinnett County where he attended Brookwood High School. He attended Clemson University and the University of Georgia, where he graduated with a BS in Science Education. After completing his undergraduate program, he attended Georgia State and earned a Master's Degree in Science Education, and he recently went back to school and graduated this past summer with a specialist degree in Instructional Technology.

Coach Kratowicz currently teaches Anatomy and Chemistry at Northview, and has been named Northview’s 2017 Head Baseball Coach. He resides in Atlanta.


  2011_KX4B0031_30.jpg RYAN BUCHANAN Defensive Backs

Coach Ryan Buchanan has been a Northview Football Coach for three years. He returns for the 2017 season as a Defensive Backs coach.

Coach Buchanan is originally from Maywood, IL, where he was raised in a family of football players including his brothers Ray, Richard, and Bobby. Ryan played football at Division II Fort Hays State University, and then played Arena Football in the IFL for both the Madison Mad Dawgs and the Peoria Pirates. He began coaching in 2005 in Illinois at Proviso East High School, then Peachtree Ridge High School here in Georgia, and finally here at Northview High School.

Coach Buchanan is a Personal Trainer at Atlanta Accelerated and lives here with his wife Syndy and his children Isaiah and Synia. He enjoys spending time with his family, golfing and bowling.


   2011_KX4B0038_37.jpgMARK CLEMENTSWide Receivers

Coach Mark Clements joins the to Northview coaching staff in 2017 for his first year, where he will be coaching Wide Receivers, as well as serving as JV Heach Coach.

Coach Clements is a native of Maine, where he graduated from Saint Josephs College of Maine with a BS in Physical Education. He coached wide receivers and quarterbacks and served as Offensive Coordinator at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine and as Wide Receivers Coach at Springfield College in Massachusetts.  He spent the last two seasons at UCLA, where he worked with Wide Receivers and Special Teams, and earned a Masters of Arts in Social Science and Comparative Education.

Mark lives in Johns Creek with his wife Stacy who is a fourth grade teacher at Wilson Creek Elementary School. 


 2011_KX4B0039_38.jpg    DERRICK HARRISRunning Backs

Derrick Harris enters his first season with the Titans as an Offensive Assistant. He is coaching primarily Running Backs.

Coach Harris was a nationally heralded, Blue-Chip quarterback prospect at Dublin High School in Dublin, GA. He was inducted into its 2014 Dublin Touchdown Club's Hall of Fame, he was a two-time GHSA (AAA) All-State QB and named MVP for his alma mater. He then chose to attend the University of Georgia under the leadership of legendary coach Vincent J. Dooley, where he lettered and was awarded Offensive Scout Team Player of the Year honors for the Bulldogs.  After two years at Georgia, Harris transferred to Western Carolina University to finish his collegiate playing career. He garnered two Southern Conference Player of the Week honors, received Dean's List recognition, and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Sports Management with a concentration in College Athletic Administration from Western Carolina University in North Carolina. 

Before arriving at Northview, Harris coached as a community lay coach at Lithia Springs High School in Douglas County, GA where he served as QB coach and assisted in offensive coordination. He coached Peachtree Ridge's 8th grade’s quarterback and wide-out positions as well as serving as the Assistant Offensive Coordinator. In addition to his current duties, under CoachUp, a national, online private coach referral database that matches coaches with athletes in various sports, Harris has established himself as the #1 ranked QB/WR coach in the state of Georgia after only two years. Harris has also trained quarterbacks and receivers throughout the states of Georgia as well as South Carolina through various football camps for over twenty plus years.


 2011_KX4B0037_36.jpg   AJ PEARSONSafeties

AJ returns to his alma mater Northview this year as a coach for the first time. He is coaching safeties.

AJ Pearson is the son of Alvin and Tajuana Pearson and the older brother of Northview senior Carson Pearson. He was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan and raised here in Johns Creek. AJ is a 2012 cum laude graduate of Northview, where he was one of the captains of the Northview football team his senior year, and a three-year letterman in both football and track. He then attended the University of Michigan and continued to play football. He was a three-year letterman at Michigan under coaches Brady Hoke and Jim Harbaugh. He graduated in 2016 with a Bachelor of Science Degree from the School of Kinesiology majoring in Movement Science. He plans on completing his Master's in Kinesiology from the University of Michigan and eventually attending medical school. 


  2011_KX4B0034_33.jpg    DANNY YOUNG - Linebackers

Coach Danny Young is another new member of the coaching staff, starting his first year as the linebacker coach at Northview High School.

Coach Young played high school football at Collins Hill High School, where he was a team captain, and then at Presbyterian College. He has been coaching football for eight years, and has coached at West Hall, Mountain View, Brookwood, and Grayson. He has coached multiple All-State and All-Region players on both sides of the ball and was a member of the 2010 6-A State Champion Brookwood Broncos coaching staff.

Coach Young has been married to his wife Whitney for 7 years, and is a proud dad to his daughter Annabelle. 


   STEPHEN O’HARAOffensive Line

Born and raised on Long Island, NY, Coach O'Hara will be a part of the Northview Staff for his second year, coaching the offensive line this year.

Stephen played high school football at Bellport High School where he lettered in football, lacrosse, and wrestling. While in high school, Coach O'Hara was an All-Division offensive guard, as well as an All-Conference lacrosse player. After high school, Coach O'Hara played lacrosse for Lenoir Rhyne University where was a four time All Conference player. Upon graduating with a Health and Physical Education degree, he returned home and coached for Bellport High School for a year before moving to Georgia and joining the Northview coaching staff. Coach O'Hara is a Special Education teacher and the Head Varsity Lacrosse Coach at Northview.