SPRINGFIELD — Rutherford High School Athletic Director Kirk Harrell announced Friday afternoon that head football coach Alvin Dempsey has resigned citing health and personal reasons.
Harrell said that Dempsey’s resignation came as a surprise, and a decision had not yet been made who would guide the program when the Rams open spring football drills on April 28.
“It was sudden to me,” Harrell said. “I didn’t know he was having these health issues.”
Preliminary efforts to reach Dempsey Friday afternoon at his school office and on his cell phone were unsuccessful.
A 1992 graduate of Rutherford, Dempsey guided the Rams for two seasons with an overall record of 5-15. The Rams were 3-7 in 2012 and 2-8 in 2013.
Harrell said that Dempsey indicated he would remain at the school the remainder of his contract, which runs through the end of June. Dempsey will not further be involved in coaching, Harrell said.
Harrell said the school would begin a process to replace Dempsey as soon as possible, but indicated that time line probably would not begin until Monday morning.
“We want to do this as quick as we can, but we don’t have a plan in place yet,” Harrell said. “We’ll have to start right away, post the job, adjust the deadline.”
Harrell said determining who will run the program in the interim before a new coach is named also is yet to be determined.
“We don’t know yet, we have some options but we haven’t had much time to think through this,” Harrell said. “Next week we’ll come up with a plan.”
Dempsey returned to Rutherford in 2012 after coaching in Mobile, Ala. Harrell said that Dempsey met with his players Friday afternoon to inform them of his decision.
“He expressed to the kids he probably would return to the Mobile area,” Harrell said. “It didn’t sound like he would re-enter the coaching aspect.”