With the Highlanders, Freeman has served as wide receivers coach, passing game coordinator and, last year, also as special teams coach.
He said the Riverside position appealed to him from what he saw as an opponent of the Warriors in recent years.
"I've competed against Riverside in high school,'' Freeman said, "and I've coached against Riverside, and what stood out to me was how physical their kids always were. In this state, to be successful, you have to have physical kids. Look at the last four teams in the state [playoffs] this year - they were all really physical football teams, big and strong. That goes a long way in this state, and it's one of the things that attracted me to the program.''
Freeman also liked the community support of the Riverside area.
"It's really a football community,'' he said, "the tradition that East Bank and DuPont had. Obviously, they love their football. It's going to take a lot of work, but it's a very appealing place because of the community support and because it's a place that's been successful before.''
Freeman's hiring gives the program a fresh start in another way. Riverside's first two coaches represented one each from the successful pasts of its two predecessors - Dick Whitman (DuPont) and Hensley (East Bank).
Some sentiment existed among the communities to hire another coach from one or the other background, but some also preferred an outside influence this time.
"I come from a high school that was consolidated,'' Freeman said, "and as with any consolidation, it is a concern when you have two communities. There are 10 different communities that feed into the Riverside area, so that can be an issue.
"To me, I don't know if that's necessarily the issue. I'm not from the area; I don't know. All I know is about the history of East Bank and DuPont is the success of their football programs. I'm really excited to get the opportunity to be part of the community.''
Reach Rick Ryan at 304-348-5175 or rickr...@wvgazette.com.