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More on Thomas's Decision to Retire

Straight from Al Thomas, who yesterday announced he is retiring from coaching after 45 years on the sideline and eight state championships, culminating in Sherwood's 14-0 season and Maryland 4A title last month:

"I've got 45 years in and I do have some health problems. It's time to start taking care of myself a little bit and doing some things I need to do.

"We've got a good staff, some young guys. 26 juniors and five sophomores on the varsity. The JV went undefeated. So the program is in good shape. 45 years is a long time. I'll turn 70 this coming season. Might as well go out on top, right?

"I'm old and tired. I do have to get treatments [for prostate cancer, diagnosed in 2004]. I don't want to be in a situation where something happens and I don't feel good and have to miss practice. Bring in someone young. I told the principal I'll finish out the school year and help the students get in college. He's pretty much assured me he's going to hire from within the staff. Three or four guys have shown interest."

As for Thomas's plans, he ruled out a full-time return to coaching but hopes to play a consultant-like role.

"I'm going to maybe help these guys a little bit," Thomas said. "I may come around a couple days and help next year. But I don't want to put myself in a position where I'm being counted on."

By Josh Barr  | January 14, 2009; 10:27 AM ET
Categories:  Football  | Tags:  Al Thomas  
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