Brett Timmons doesn't expect to be away from the football field for very long because his passion for the game is too strong.
That should be enough. Timmons is too valuable a commodity in the community to be left off the sidelines.
He is great with kids, knows how to win, has numerous connections to college football coaches and stresses academics.
Timmons played on Southeast's two state championship teams and was a member of Tulane's undefeated football team in 1998.
Early this week, he left his position as athletic director and head football coach at Out-Of-Door-Academy. His departure, like his hiring nine years ago, was a surprise to outsiders.
Timmons is calling it a mutual parting of the ways. He and school administrators didn't share the same vision for the football program, he said.
"What they are trying to be is different than what I had in mind," said Timmons, who was ODA's only football coach since the program started. "We came to an agreement at the end of month. Most of my guys who were coaching football have left."
ODA Head of School David Mahler issued the following statement about Timmons' departure Thursday: "Brett Timmons has contributed greatly to the growth and development of the Thunder athletic program during his tenure. ... As a school community, we are grateful to Coach Timmons for his leadership and dedicated service to Out-of-Door. We wish him nothing but the best as he opens up a new chapter in his professiona career."
Timmons will not be an assistant at ODA or connected with the school in any capacity.
But he wants to coach and should be at the top of the list for any school, particularly in Manatee and Sarasota counties, looking for a head football coach or coordinator.
"Whatever opportunities present themselves I will look at it whether it be college or high school or working as an assistant," Timmons said. "I just enjoy being around young people, and I love football. I am open to anything."
Liberty staying at ODA
The ODA boys basketball team has to be glad that head coach Marcus Liberty is returning for his third season.
Arguably the most famous high school basketball coach in the state, Liberty says he sees his program making a giant leap next season, especially with the return of Amad Brayboy and Kolbe Ward, who are going into their junior year.
This year's NBA Draft brought back memories for the former No. 1-rated high school player.
After a solid career at Illinois, the 6-foot-7 Liberty was drafted 42nd overall by Denver in 1990. He played five seasons in the NBA.
The 46-year-old Liberty says he will miss Timmons, whom he called a friend and a mentor, but plans to stay at ODA and is not interested in pursuing a college job or a position at one of those basketball hotbed high schools.
He trains basketball players through his Liberty Edge organization and can be reached at MarcusLiberty.com. He will be running a basketball camp at ODA next week.
"It hasn't even crossed my mind to coach college. I enjoy being here and mentoring and sharing my life's lessons. It's been a great experience, and we are building something. I am definitely coming back," Liberty said.
Time to rethink policy?
We can't afford to let good coaches leave, which is why the new leadership of the School District of Manatee County needs to take another look at its policy of not allowing athletic directors or people in administrative positions be head coaches.
Manatee County has lost some good coaches under that policy such as Palmetto's Dustin Dahlquist, the successful boys soccer coach who gave that program and its players a positive identity.
There were many others, and they were willing to work without a stipend. With the uncertain fiscal situation, discarding free services from a qualified head coach who works well with kids is something that must be addressed.
A person who enjoys being a head coach should not have to give up that position if he or she wants to take on an administrative position.
Alan Dell, Herald sports writer, can be reached at 941-745-7056. Follow him on Twitter @ADellSports.