GREENFIELD — The makeup of the Greenfield-Central High School athletics department continues to evolve, following the resignation of assistant athletics director Doug Laker.
Laker stepped down last week as both the assistant athletics director at the high school and the chief athletics director at the junior high.
For several years, Laker served with high school athletics director Kevin Horrigan before Horrigan retired at the end of the 2013-14 school year.
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First-year athletics director Jared Manning will now work with J.R. Angle as his No. 2. Angle, is his first year in the Greenfield school system, was selected by Greenfield-Central administrators to take Laker’s place at the high school and junior high. A former prep basketball star at Indian Creek High School, Angle spent 11 years in Iowa before returning to take a position at Greenfield-Central as an in-school discipline coordinator.
Laker declined to comment, other than to say that he will remain the Cougars girls basketball head coach.
“Obviously, the timing’s not very good for us, anytime you’re three-fourths of the way through a school year,” said Greenfield Superintendent Harold Olin, who added that Laker’s resignation was voluntary. “But I think Mr. Laker wanted to finish through the basketball season in that role (as assistant athletics director).
“And, once the basketball season was over, I think he felt like he had some other options that were better for him. He’s got multiple options in terms of things that he could do. His family owns a couple of businesses, so he has some options there.”
A 1987 Rushville graduate and former boys assistant basketball coach with the Lions, Laker took over as the Greenfield-Central girls head coach in 2008. His teams are 89-61 through seven seasons. Laker earned a bachelor’s degree from Indiana University in physical education and health, a master’s from Ball State in sports administration and a transition to teaching degree from Indiana Wesleyan.
“We certainly asked a lot of Doug,” Olin added. “When he first started, he was working entirely at the high school. When we went through some cost containment back in 2009, 2010, we asked him to add some duties at the junior high school.
“I think his heart was always there at the high school, so it was a little difficult for him, I think, going through that change. But he certainly stepped up and did what we asked him to do.”
Olin is confident Angle can handle the new duties at the high school and junior high, which include scheduling use of school facilities, scheduling officials, contracting with other schools, taking care of transportation and supervising numerous events.
“We have every confidence in the world that J.R. can step in and do that,” Olin said. “We had a couple other people in-house who could have done that, but you don’t want to take somebody out of a teaching role when they’re three-fourths of the way through the school year.”
Angle is also a boys basketball assistant coach.
Because the assistant athletics director and junior high A.D. jobs are at-will, noncertified positions, they do not require school board approval, Olin said.