Coaches leaving profession earlier in their careers

The times they are a changing.

In my high school days, which seems like a hundred years ago, coaches would routinely coach 10 to 15 years.

Today, it seems just the opposite. Coaches are staying less and less as coaches, especially the younger men and women. They put a few years in, and then resign, usually citing family reasons for stepping down. I truly believe that in some instances, but not all. I think many coaches get tired of trying to fundraise, and they are tired of complaining parents.

It's hard enough to coach a team these days, and even tougher when parents complain about lack of playing time and bad-mouth a coach behind his or her back. What I usually find is that parents are very unrealistic about the abilities of their children.

I also think that parents believe they are entitled to complain to coaches and administrators about a coach. I find that happens more in public schools than in private schools. Unless a coach is physically accosting a player or cussing at him/her, a parent needs to stay out of it. The parents aren't there at practice, they get the information second-hand.

There also is the teaching aspect of high school athletics. More and more pressure is being put on teachers at the high school level, and many of CHS head coaches teach academic subjects.

The latest short-term coach to leave the coaching ranks way too soon is Cody Farnworth, who resigned last week as head baseball coach after four seasons on the job.

Farnworth guided the Senators into the playoffs this past season. There always seemed to be chit-chat as to whether he would return after last season, and school officials told Farnworth to take some more time to contemplate the decision. Top assistant Brian Manoukian ran the summer program.

Farnworth has young children, 10 and 9.

"It was a family decision," Farnworth said. "My wife was supportive of whatever decision I made. I appreciated the opportunity that Carson gave me. It is a good time to leave. We have a good team coming back with three of the best pitchers.

"I will miss being around the kids. I might come back as an assistant sometime."

Farnworth talked about how much he enjoyed watching his daughter play softball this summer, which is something he hadn't done in the past because of summer baseball.

While I will miss dealing with coach Farnworth, I think coaches need to be more careful when they take a job. Having a new coach every few years isn't a good thing for any varsity program. It's not fair to the kids, and it's not fair to the school. I'd like to see coaches stay a minimum of five years.

I think another big issue is pay. Coaches get next to nothing for coaching when you consider how much time is put into it during the season and the off-season. A former Carson coach told me several years ago he would have stayed if there was more money involved. It just wasn't worth his time anymore.

Farnworth said pay was never an issue, and he doesn't think it is for the coaches he talks with on a regular basis.


Carson also is looking for a new girls basketball coach.

Todd Ackerman resigned at the end of last year. A couple of months later, he ended up getting the job back. Last week he told returning players that he wouldn't be coming back after all.

A message left on Ackerman's cell phone wasn't returned on Saturday.

Principal Ron Beck said Friday night that he has re-opened the search for a new coach.


Have you seen the scores in Division I football thus far? Is anybody playing any defense this year?

Reed knocks off Douglas 54-35, Reno pounds Galena 51-14 and North Valleys topped Manogue 55-48.

Should be interesting next week when Carson visits North Valleys.


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment