RED JACKET — Garland “Rabbit” Thompson has officially resigned from his position as the Mingo Central Miners head basketball coach on Friday morning.
It had been rumored for the past few weeks that Thompson might step down after his one year at MCHS.
After one season as the Miners head coach Thompson turned in his letter of resignation to the administration. The Miners finished the 2015-2016 season with a record of 2-20 and lost in the first round of the sectional tournament to Wayne by a final score of 51-46.
Thompson began his coaching career back in 1995 when he was assistant coach under Jeff Jackson at University Heights. He coached there from 1995 to 1999 until he made the move to Williamson High School and was assistant coach under Curt Fletcher. Thompson helped the Wolfpack to their last state tournament appearance and a state title in 2001 in Class-A basketball. In 2007 Thompson made the move to Tug Valley High School where he took the Head coaching job.
Thompson created a big name for himself by coaching the Panthers to five state tournament appearances in his eight season as head coach. In the 2011-2012 basketball season Thompson pushed the Panthers to a state championship title in Class-AA basketball and then a Class-A state championship title the following season.
After eight years as the head coach at Tug Valley Thompson accepted the job as Head Coach of the Mingo Central Miners. Thompson took the head coaching job of the Miners knowing that the program was in need of a rebuilding phase after the Miners had lost some talent to other schools. Mingo Central had a state tournament appearance under the direction of then Head Coach Brad Napier during the 2014-2015 season. After the state tournament appearance and the departure of Napier Thompson was left with few returning starters.
As of now the only name being referred to as a possible replacement is Thompson’s assistant coach Robbie Browning whom Thompson said, “would be a great person for the task.”
Mingo Central Athletic Director Dr. Ted Kinder said, “I regretfully accepted his resignation yesterday while meeting with him. We greatly appreciate his efforts this past season, including the discipline and work effort he brought to the program. We wish him the best as he pursues other options in his career.”
During a recent interview with Thompson he said he had no intentions of coaching again. He said, “I feel the game has passed me by.”
(William Plaster is the sports reporter for the Williamson Daily News, he can be reached at 304-235-4242 ext. 2274 or at [email protected] or on twitter @sidplaster)