With improvements made in the win-loss record, facilities and profile of Murray County High School’s baseball program, Jason Lanham believes his nine years as Indians coach were well spent.

For that reason, he’s at peace after resigning from his teaching and coaching positions in Chatsworth to take over similar duties at Trion, where he’ll be closer to home and family.

Lanham’s career record at Murray County, his only varsity coaching job — he spent two years as the coach at Ringgold Middle, going 35-5 and winning two league titles before being hired in Chatsworth — was 106-119.

However, under Lanham’s guidance the Indians enjoyed their first winning season in more than 20 years, going 17-9 in 2006 and, after a two-year stint in Class 5A in which they failed to produce a winning record, they’ve turned in back-to-back winning seasons, though their Region 7-4A marks were sub-.500 in the three winning campaigns.

Lanham also spent four years as an assistant under former Indians football coach Bill Napier, serving as the freshman team’s head coach at one point. He’ll return to assisting with that sport at Trion as the Bulldogs’ defensive line coach under David Humphreys, who took over as football coach and athletic director prior to the 2008-09 school year.

Lanham was approved by the Trion City Schools Board of Education in a Monday night meeting. Holcomb said Lanham told him and Murray County principal Gina Linder of his decision to leave on Thursday and also announced it at the team’s banquet that night. Lanham turned in a formal resignation letter to Linder on Friday, Holcomb said.

At Trion, Lanham will fill the baseball post vacated by J.J. Owens after just two seasons and be the high school’s “history inclusion” teacher, a special education position. Lanham called Trion City Schools “an excellent school system, one of the best in the state.”

Lanham, who is married and has two elementary school-age sons, is also glad to have a shorter commute from his Rock Springs home, about 20 minutes away from Trion.

Trion competes in Region 6-A and, according to results posted at GaSports.com, went 3-20 overall and 2-8 in region play this past season and was 6-18 and 4-8 in 2009. Asked whether Owens was fired or resigned from his coaching job, Humphreys said, “I think a little bit of both.”

Dalton Daily Citizen