J.B. Bynum, who led the Wildwood Middle High School football team to the postseason in each of the past two seasons, is being replaced as Wildcats head coach. Bynum compiled a 12-10 record during his tenure.

WILDWOOD — J.B. Bynum will not have a chance to lead the Wildwood Middle High School football into the postseason for a third straight year.


Bynum confirmed Thursday he is being replaced as Wildcats coach after compiling a 12-10 record in two seasons.


"I didn’t step down," said Bynum. "I was relieved of my duties. They told they wanted to head in a different direction.


"I wasn’t expecting it and it came as a complete surprise."


Originally hired as offensive coordinator by McKinley Rolle in 2017, Bynum helped lead the Wildcats to one of the most-prolific turnarounds in state history. Prior to Rolle and Bynum’s arrival, Wildwood had gone nearly four years without a win on the football field.


Under Rolle the Wildcats were 10-1 in 2017, with Bynum’s offense generating nearly 40 points per game. Wildwood scored at least 40 points in five games.


Bynum was named interim coach after Joey McGuire was fired one game into the 2018 season. He led the Wildcats to a 6-5 record the rest of the way and into Class 1A-Region 4 semifinals.


The interim tag was lifted for the 2019 season and Bynum directed Wildwood to a second straight 6-5 record and the Class 1A-Region 4 quarterfinals. The Wildcats faced a challenging schedule that featured seven teams from larger classifications, including one from South Carolina.


"Certainly, the football program is in better shape now than it was before I arrived with coach Rolle," said Bynum. "I absolutely believe we helped restore respectability to Wildwood and I’m very proud of that. The kids deserve a lot of the credit; they bought in to what we were teaching and worked very hard to represent Wildwood Middle High School.


"I hate leaving because the boys and I ended last season feeling as if we had some unfinished business for the (2020 season), but I hope they use the tools we left and take that next step."


Wildwood Athletic Director Ryan Harrison did not respond to multiple requests sent over several days seeking comment on the situation. However, school Principal Jerry Graybeal confirmed the vacancy in an email and said the opening had been advertised.


"(The vacancy) must be posted for 10 days," said Graybeal. "At this point, no interviews have even been set up yet. We will make a decision after the process is complete and hire the best candidate available."


No posting of a coaching vacancy at Wildwood, dating back to Feb. 3, could be found on FHSAA website on Thursday.


Graybeal said later the posting was "internal," meaning the vacancy was made available only to school employees.


However, multiple sources said the job has been offered to Vincent Brown and he will be named head coach after students and faculty return from Spring Break, which begins Monday for Sumter County schools.


Brown was the head coach of the Wildcats’ junior varsity team in 2019. After the junior varsity season ended in late September, Bynum said Brown joined his staff for the remainder of the season.


Currently, Brown is a teacher at Sumter PREP Academy in Wildwood, according to the school’s website. He is a graduate of Gainesville Eastside High School and the University of Florida.


While at Florida, Brown was a running back on the football team and played in six games during the 2008 and 2009 seasons.