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Jefferson City hires a new football coach


The Jefferson City football team has a new leader. On Monday, the district announced that Eric Thomas will take the helm of the Jay program.

The move comes after former head coach Damon Wells decided to step down from his position, but remain at the school as the Activities Director.

Thomas is no stranger to the area, as he actually used to play football at Jefferson City High School. He was a member of the 1990 and 1991 state championships teams and was an all-state selection for the Jays in 1992.

"We are excited to be able to welcome a former Jay to head up the football program at JCHS," Jefferson City School District Director of Activities Ehren Earleywine said in a press release. "In addition to his coaching credentials, Eric Thomas is looking forward to moving back to his alma mater and carrying on the winning tradition he
experienced as a player under his coach Pete Adkins.”

He will take the helm of Jay football with 26 years of coaching experience, 19 of which were spent as a head coach. He most recently was the head coach at Lee's Summit High School.

Thomas found quite a bit of success in his team leading the football team at Cameron High School. He led that program to two state title appearances and won it all in 2005.

“As a longtime coach, I’m excited to bring a unique set of skills, passion, and experience to Jefferson City HighSchool,” Thomas said in a press release. “Returning to my alma mater isn’t just a journey back to high school; it’s a homecoming to a community and a team that helped build me into the man I am today and put me on my path to becoming a coach. I look forward to forging a legacy that echoes the past while fueling the victories of the future.”

In 2022, Thomas was honored with the Paul Martel Outstanding Service Award by the Missouri Football
Coaches Association. The Martel Service award is given in recognition of selfless service to the Missouri
Football Coaches Association

He's coached some big names in his time in high school football, including former Mizzou standout quarterback Drew Lock. He also, most recently, coached the Chiefs' 2023 first-round draft pick, d Felix Anudike-Uzomah, before he went to Kansas State.

Article Topic Follows: Jefferson City

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Nathalie Jones

Nathalie anchors and reports sports for ABC17. She started working at the station in June 2020.


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