Coach Mickey Mitchell Hangs 'em Up
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One Tough Competitor

After a 31 year coaching career, 29 of them at Monahans High School, Defensive Coordinator Mickey Mitchell is retiring.

“It’s been a great run,” Coach Mitchell said.  “I’m looking forward to spending some more quality time with my family and just taking it easy.”

Starting as a freshman coach in 1984, Coach Mitchell quickly moved up the ranks and helped the Loboes become the West Texas Powerhouse.

He moved up to the varsity squad in 1987 coaching the linebackers, receivers and defensive tackles. In the 95-96 seasons he took a job in Andrews and coached the offensive line, but he moved back to Monahans for the 1997 season, taking over the defense.

“I have seen a lot of great kids come through the program,” Mitchell said. “I have enjoyed watching them grow up into men. I tried to be a good example on and off the field. Working with the kids, I think, is number one, “I feel blessed to have done it for so long.”

Coach Mitchell graduated from Texas Tech University in 1980 where he met his wife, and current Monahans High School teacher, Foydell Mitchell. Foydell is planning on retiring also.

They met at softball intramurals at Tech and haven’t left each other’s side since.

“Mickey is the most positive person I know,” Foydell stated. “He never brings his work home, other than bouncing the occasional idea off of me, and loved coaching the kids. I’ve enjoyed watching him coach. Looking back, we have had a lot of good times at the school, but what I’m going to miss the most is the fellowship with all the teachers, coaches and administration. We have such a great bond. They have been so good to us. I look forward to spending some more time with Mickey and our whole family. It’s a new chapter in our life.”

The pair has three children, daughters Whitney, Kaitlin, and son Logan. Logan is a senior this year and played three years under his dad’s tutelage at the defensive back position.

“Playing for dad was pretty awesome,” Logan said. “I think he was a bit harder on me than some of the other players, but it made me a better player. It was a blast being with him on the sidelines.”

The team went 12-3 in the highly successful 2011 season and went five rounds deep into the playoffs.

“This year was so fun for me,” Mitchell stated. “It felt great to play into December and I’m very proud of the team and coaches. It has been so special to coach my son and watch him grow. He has become quite an outstanding young man. I have also enjoyed coaching with Mickey, (Head Coach Mickey Owens). He puts his heart and soul into this team and I guarantee that there is not another coach in the country that works harder or is more dedicated. He loves the kids and he gives it everything he has. I appreciate everything he has done for my family and me. He is such a good friend. We have the best coaching staff in the country. Our fans travel and support the team better then any I have seen, and our band and directors are top-notch. I love it here.”

Head Coach Mickey Owens started his coaching career at Monahans and recalls meeting Coach Mitchell for the first time. “I was a rookie coach in 1985 when Mick took me under his wing,” Owens said. “Without a doubt he is the most loyal guy I’ve ever met. He was great with the kids, and one hell of a coach. We have had some great times on the sidelines and in this field house. He has done so much for the community and this school. He will be truly missed.”

Being a successful coach is not Mitchell’s only accolade at Monahans. He has been an excellent educator. He taught many different classes over the years. He taught Government, Economics, Biology, Geography, Health and Drivers Ed. The one class that he loved to teach above all else would be History.

“I love the history of this great country and what it stands for,” Coach said. “It’s the greatest country in the world and I enjoyed teaching our kids all about it.”

The Loboes compiled a 182-85-1 record over his career and are a team to be feared every time they step on the field.

“I’m proud of the accomplishments we had while I was coaching,” Mitchell said. “There are so many that helped me along the way from Coach Gary Gains and Bren Holland to Larry Hanna, that I will always be grateful. I’ll always have so many great memories, but I’m looking forward to some new challenges. I’ve got lots of things I want to see and do, starting with some fly-fishing.”

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