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Jefferson City football coach resigns, remains on as athletic director


Jefferson City football will be searching for a new head coach for the 2024 season. Effective Friday, Damon Wells resigned from his position as head coach, but said he does want to stay on board as the JC Activities Director, the district confirmed.

In a statement to Jay community, Wells said it was a difficult decision for him to make, but it will also open up a new chapter for him and his family and also for the team.

"To our players, your growth on and off the field has been inspiring. You’ve embodied the true essence of sportsmanship and resilience. I am incredibly proud of each of you," he said in the statement. "To the families, your support and enthusiasm have been pivotal. Your involvement has helped shape an enriching environment for our athletes to excel and has been invaluable to our team’s accomplishments....Thank you for the laughter, challenges, and triumphs. Coaching you has been an honor, and I eagerly anticipate witnessing your future achievements."

Wells had been the head coach of the Jays for the past three seasons, going 21-15 overall. His presence provided a big step in the right direction for Jefferson City, after the program struggled to get above the .500 mark for multiple years prior to his arrival. This past season, 2023, was by far the highlight of his time at the helm, as his team won the program's first district championship since 2009 and advanced all the way to the Class 4 state semifinals. JC fell to Kearney in that semifinal game, but finished the year 9-5, overall.

"We are proud of what Coach Wells has accomplished during his time leading the Jay Football program. He has undoubtedly strengthened the team and had a positive impact on our players. The district supports Coach Wells' decision to focus exclusively on the role of Athletics Director after a long and successful career in coaching," the Jefferson City High School administration said in a statement. "We are happy for him and his family as he makes this transition, and we are grateful to have his continued support and impact on JCHS football and all activities."

He was first hired in January of 2021, after 13 years coaching Rifle High School, in Colorado. In his time with the Bears, he went 113-35 overall and led the program to three state championship games. At the time, he was Jefferson City's third head coach in just eight months time and has since brought stability to the position

The Jays will now be searching for the program's fifth head coach in eight years. They will be doing it with Wells' direction, though, as the school's activities director.

"As Athletic Director, I will look forward to continuing to champion our JCHS activities programs while remaining a steadfast supporter of this team," he said. "My commitment to our school’s athletic success and student-athlete development is unwavering."

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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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