Thompson’s Seale to retire

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Thompson High School is the latest county school to be looking for a new football coach.

Ricky Seale, who has coached the Warriors for the last 17 years, recently announced he would retire at the end of the current school year.

&uot;I don’t guess there is ever a good time, or a bad time,&uot; Seale said Monday afternoon. &uot;I’ve enjoyed (coaching) while I’ve been here.&uot;

Seale served as Thompson head coach and athletic director for the last 17 years and also coached golf for several years. Before returning to his alma mater, he coached at Cordova High, Livingston University (now the University of West Alabama) and Shelby County High.

He came to Thompson as head football coach in 1988, after former football coach and then principal Larry Simmons asked him to return.

Seale said he has rich memories from the last 17 years.

&uot;Some years you win more games, and some years you win less, but I’ve always enjoyed the groups of kids I’ve had,&uot; he said. &uot;It was tough&uot; telling the players.

The Warriors went 6-4 last season, barely missing the playoffs. They were among the highest scoring teams in Class 6A football.

Coincidentally, Seale’s final game as Thompson coach was one of his more memorable, as the Warriors defeated Jemison, 70-33.

One of his best teams was in 1997, when the Warriors defeated McAdory by one point in the regular season finale to clinch the area. They defeated Buckhorn in the first round of the Class 5A Playoffs but lost to Erwin in the second round.

Seale said he plans to enter a new profession upon retirement that does not involve coaching. He is eligible for retirement because of his 27-plus years in the state education system.

&uot;I have an opportunity to do something else,&uot; he said.

Brian Maynard, an assistant for last year’s team, will serve as interim head coach and will lead the team during spring training.

Seale believes next year’s team can make a playoff run.

&uot;I feel like they have a chance to be successful,&uot; he said.

&uot;I’ll still be wishing them well.&uot;

Seale is the second Shelby County coach this month to announce his resignation. Earlier this month, former Calera High coach Ken Adams resigned to take a job at Ardmore High School in north Alabama