OBIT: Former Bandys, Foard, St. Stephens head football coach Foster dies

Published Tuesday, February 28th, 2023

Coach Dick Foster, who was a fixture in area football for more than 50 years, died on Monday. thanks the family for granting permission to use this Facebook photo of  Coach with his obituary.

He coached for 34 years — 32 in

Catawba County — and won 175 games


Editor’s note: All year-by-year and record information about Dick Foster’s coaching career in this article is copyrighted — as is all content on — and can’t be used by print or radio broadcasts without  crediting for the information/research or receiving a waiver. To request one, contact Chris Hobbs at


GRANITE FALLS – Dick Foster, a legendary high school and college football player who was also a prep head coach in 375 games at four high schools – three in Catawba County – has broken huddle for the last time.

Foster, a record-breaking running back at old Granite Falls High who also played at Lenoir-Rhyne University from 1956-1959, died Monday. He was 85.

Foster played for the late Don (Red) Kirkpatrick at Granite Falls, where his average scoring run was more than 50 yards, and the late Clarence Stasavich at LRU. At the time, Foster was one of the most highly-recruited stars in the Carolinas, going to LRU despite offers from many ACC schools.

Foster coached prep teams over 34 years that went 175-191-9 with 16 winning seasons, 16 losing seasons and two .500 records.

He coached three conference champions, one team that shared a league title and nine state playoff teams.

Foster’s first high school head-coaching job came in 1962 and the next year at West Rowan in Mount Ulla.

In 1964, he was hired as the new head football coach at Bandys, guiding the Trojans for 14 years and a record of 78-73-4.

Foster left Bandys to become head coach at Fred T. Foard in 1978 and led the Tigers to a 57-47-1 record over nine years.

His 1981-1983 teams are Foard’s only back-to-back-to- back winning teams, and his 1982 team won a N.C. High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA) Division II 2A state title.

The Division 2 playoffs were a postseason extension added by the NCHSAA for a limited number of years.

Foard, led by a strong running game that featured Brian Kimball, Randy Hefner, Steve Buchanan and Robert


beat Franklin 7-0 on the road and won 28-25 at Southwest Guilford in the title game.

After the 1986 season, Foster sought a new challenge by taking over as head coach at St. Stephens, where the Indians had not reached the postseason since 1961.

In his second season there, St. Stephens went 6-5 and lost a state playoff game 26-8 at Shelby.

In 1991, the Indians won their first state playoff game by beating West Henderson 39-32 in Hickory. The next week, host East-Rowan nipped the Indians 17-2.

Foster’s nine teams at St. Stephens went 38-56-1.

His final coaching was from 1997 to 2002 with running backs at LRU.

Foster was inducted into the Caldwell County Sports Hall of Fame in 1997 and into the Catawba County Sports Hall of Fame in 2008.




Year                                      School                         Conf.               All

1964                                        Bandys                     1-8/10th                 1-8-1

1965                                        Bandys                      7-1-1/T2             8-1-1

1966                                       Bandys                       3-6/7th              4-6-0

1967                                       Bandys                        5-4/T5               6-4-0

1968                                       Bandys                        2-7/T8               3-7-0

1969                                       Bandys                        5-4/5th               6-4-0

1970                                       Bandys                        8-1/champ     10-3-0*

1971                                       Bandys                         8-0/champ      10-1-1*

1972                                      Bandys                         4-4-1/T7            4-5-1

1973                                      Bandys                         5-4/5th               6-4-0

1974                                     Bandys                          5-3-1/6th            6-3-1

1975                                     Bandys                           3-6/7th              3-6-1

1976                                     Bandys                           5-5/T5             5-5-0

1977                                      Bandys                          6-1/2nd           6-5-0*

1978                                    Foard                                1-6/7th              2-8-0

1979                                    Foard                                  1-6/7th             3-7-0

1980                                    Foard                                 4-3/T3           5-5-0

1981                                    Foard                                   6-1/Tie 1       9-2-0*

1982                                   Foard                                    6-1/Tie 1     10-2-0*

1983                                   Foard                                   6-1/champ      8-2-1*

1984                                   Foard                                     2-5/T5           2-8-0

1985                                   Foard                                      4-1/2nd         7-4-0*

1986                                    Foard                                      0-5/6th          1-9-0

1987                                   St. Stephens                             0-5/6th        0-10-0

1988                                  St. Stephens                             3-2/T3           6-5-0*

1989                                  St. Stephens                              3-2/T3           5-4-1

1990                                  St. Stephens                                1-4/T5         3-7-0

1991                                   St. Stephens                                4-1/2nd      9-3-0*

1992                                   St. Stephens                                 2-3/T4       3-7-0

1993                                   St. Stephens                                 2-2/5th       3-7-0

1994                                   St. Stephens                                  2-2/4th      6-5-0

1995                                   St. Stephens                                   0-4/5th     3-8-0



At W. Rowan, 1962-63: 2-15-3

At Bandys, 1964-1977: 78-73-4

At Foard, 1978-1986: 57-47-1

At St. Stephens, 1987-1995: 38-56-1

Totals: 175-191-9, 34 years

SOURCE: files and research.

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