Longtime East Hall football coach Bryan Gray decided Wednesday that it was finally the right time to end his 11-year run as coach of the Vikings program, but is making it clear he has no plans of leaving the school any time soon.
“I’ve decided that I really want to go into administration,” said Gray, who also spent two years as an East Hall assistant coach before taking the head coaching position in 2007. “I’ve been speaking about this with (principal) Mr. (Jeff) Cooper the past few weeks, and I feel like the time is right to make the move.”
Earlier Wednesday, Gray met with his assistant coaches to inform them of his decision to hang it up as a football coach, then told the players in a meeting when school let out for the day.
Gray said that’s he’s felt the pull for a few years to make the move into school administration, but wanted to keep coaching because of the players he had on his roster. In 2017, East Hall won its first playoff game since 1993, beating No. 9-ranked Morgan County 50-36 in Madison. On Gray’s watch, East Hall also made the playoffs in 2014 and 2015. The biggest highlight, according to Gray, was seeing his former players go on to be successful after their playing days were done.
Gray, 45, has spent 21 years coaching high school football.
“The program we have here at East Hall is in great shape,” said Gray, “The next coach here is going to have a lot of success.”
Even though Gray made it clear he is through coaching football, he’s going to continue to be a boisterous Vikings fan.
“I’ll always be in the black and gold cheering,” said Gray.
Gray was the second-longest standing coach at East Hall, according to the Georgia High School Football Historians Association. Wayne Bradshaw coached at East Hall from 1987-1999.