The departure of East Gadsden High School head football coach Corey Fuller to join the coaching staff at Florida A&M University last month left a void that was filled April 24 by Fuller’s assistant Trace Laing. He has worked at East Gadsden as head strength coach and defensive line coach since 2009.
“Today is a new day, and I have the utmost confidence in the world in our players. I’m looking forward to getting on the grass. We have a good bunch of kids here, and I’m confident they will perform well,” Laing said after accepting the position.
This is Laing’s first official job in the capacity of head coach and, he said, he is looking forward to the challenge.
His style of coaching, Laing said, is similar to Fuller’s and they both are proponents of “old-school” football. The style is very physical and disciplined.
“We will continue that style of coaching,” he said. “I have no predictions, and we will focus on getting back where we were. I’ve been coaching 17 years; I’ve been around this game for a long time and worked with several coaches. I have learned something from them all, which I will bring with me to this job.”
Dr. Kimball Thomas, principal, said Laing was one of the top three candidates.
“Any of the three would have done a good job, but I liked his concept of the student-athlete with the student part coming first. I liked the way he interacts with the students. Some of our male students need that father figure, and he is the father of two boys. I felt he could bring an understanding to some of the kids who really need that role model,” Thomas said.
Laing is a graduate of Northern Michigan University and has played professional football in the Canadian Football League as well as arena football for the Milwaukee Mustangs and the Iowa Barnstormers.