Coach Ward steps down

After 17 seasons at the helm, Dave Ward announced he is resigning as head football coach at Oak Harbor High School.

"I think the school administration was ready for me to step down from the position, but it came as a surprise to some of the kids," Ward said in a telephone interview Tuesday afternoon. "It's been a good 17 years."

Ward said he thought it was a good time for the move, but stressed he is not retiring.

"I'm not retiring from coaching, I'm just taking some time off," he said. "All Oak Harbor would have to do is request for me to come back and I would."

Ward retired from his teaching position last year when his team won the Class 4A state title, but told Oak Harbor High School officials he wanted to stay on for one more season as head football coach. That started the wheels of his exit in motion.

Ward said his wife is eligible to retire from teaching this year. They had discussed moving on and teaching and or coaching somewhere else.

"That would be very hard to do," he said. "We are Wildcats through and through and always will be."

Ward said it is no secret or surprise that defensive coordinator Jay Turner will be the Wildcats' next head football coach.

"It has been in the works for quite awhile now and when I retired from teaching last year and said I wanted to be head coach for one more season, the school administration made sure Jay knew he was next in line for the position," Ward said.

As for the future, Ward said he has already been offered a job in the KWDB radio booth helping broadcast Oak Harbor High School football games.

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