Al Slamer is stepping down as Holt’s football coach.
The veteran high school football coach announced Monday his decision to retire from coaching and teaching.
Slamer said his health and an opportunity to join the Albion College football staff factored into his decision.
“With those two things playing into each other it just seemed like it was a good time,” said Slamer, who spent the last seven seasons at Holt.
Slamer, who has had heart issues, has spent 37 years working in high school football, including the last 28 as a head coach. He led Holt to a 41-30 record and four playoff appearances in seven seasons. Prior to taking over at Holt, Slamer spent 21 seasons as the head coach at Battle Creek Central.
While the 59-year old Slamer found a niche at the high school level, he couldn’t pass up an opportunity to try out the college level and work with the secondary for coach Craig Rundle at Albion.
“When you’re a young coach you kind of take your path,” Slamer said. “As a young coach I thought maybe that college path was the way to go, but then you get entrenched into a community and the high school teaching and coaching and it really fit me well. At this time of my career, I thought that this was a great opportunity to try something and an opportunity that might not come up again.”
Slamer, whose retirement will be effective at the end of the school year, said he has enjoyed a positive experience at Holt and his fall Friday nights on the sidelines.
“This is a great community where football on a Friday is still old school and important, and I mean that in the best of ways,” Slamer said. “It’s fun to play, it’s an event and we had some great times and some conference championships and some big, big victories and some heartbreaking losses. Over the course of time I think that every kid that has been involved and experienced this has really enjoyed a positive experience at Holt.”