Athletics is a vital part of the extracurricular experience of our students at Starkville Academy. The Athletic Department is committed to providing a wide variety of competitive interscholastic sports teams for its student body while embracing the school’s mission. Starkville Academy’s athletic program provides a level of competition appropriate to the age, development, ability, and interest of all its students.
Starkville Academy has a rich tradition of excellence throughout its athletic program. Sports that are offered to students in grades seven through twelve include: baseball, basketball (boys and girls), cheerleading, cross country (boys and girls), dance, football, golf (boys and girls), soccer (boys and girls), softball, swimming (boys and girls), tennis (boys and girls), and track and field (boys and girls). Sports that are offered to students in five and six include: basketball (boys and girls) and football. Swimming is offered to all boys and girls, first grade and up.
Tony Stanford, Athletic Director
Tony Stanford’s coaching career began in 1976 as an assistant football coach at Carroll Academy, followed by stops at Kosciusko, Lumberton, Neshoba Central, Louisville, Philadelphia, Morton, Choctaw Central, Columbus, Oak Hill Academy, and Starkville Academy over the next 40 years. A graduate of Winona High School, Coach Stanford went on to earn degrees from Holmes Jr. College, Delta State University, and Mississippi State University. From 1995-2003, he also served as the Louisville High School Athletic Director while guiding the Wildcats to four division championships and the 1995 4A state championship. Through the years, Coach Stanford has been a very active member of the M.A.C. where he has served on the Board of Directors, the Executive Committee, and as Vice-President and President from 2002-2004. He was elected to the M.A.C. Hall of Fame in 2013. He has been married for more than 40 years and has one son who is also a football coach. He is a proud grandfather.
Chase Nicholson, Associate Athletic Director
Coach Chase Nicholson (Coach Nick) has been on staff at Starkville Academy since 2009. Prior to joining the Starkville Academy family he coached football and baseball from 2005 until 2008 at Newton Academy. Since coming to Starkville Academy he has taught American Government and Economics for six years, Advanced World Geography for five years, Health one year and currently is in his second year as the Advanced Placement Government and Politics teacher. He served as Starkville Academy’s assistant track coach for two years and head track coach for three. Coach Nicholson is going into his eighth season as a football coach at Starkville Academy and his second season as the head football coach.
Coach Nicholson received his Associate’s Degree from East Central Community College and a Bachelor’s Degree from Mississippi State University. In 2011 he became certified to be an administrator through the MAIS Leadership Institute Class, and has since been serving as an assistant administrator at Starkville Academy. Beginning in 2016 he will be serving as the associate athletic director under Tony Stanford.
He has one child, Maggie Sky Nicholson, who was born in September 2014. In his spare time, Coach Nicholson enjoys hunting, remodeling his home, wood working, and spending time with his family and friends.