Chattahochee coach Owens resigns, cites health reasons

Chattahoochee football coach Michael Owens resigned Monday morning, citing health reasons.

Owens met with his players Monday and revealed that he was diagnosed with GIST (gastrointestinal stromal tumors) in April of 2012 while an assistant coach at Brookwood. He underwent a Whipple procedure, a surgical operation to remove surrounding organs.

‘’I took the position here wanting to be able to fight through it, but the treatments that I’m on and the ramifications of surgery were making that difficult for me to meet the physical obligations of the job,’’ Owens said ‘’I’m a private person, but people deserve to know what’s going on. I’m really fortunate to be a part of Chattahoochee for a year and a half. It’s a special place. I hope I can stay.’’

Owens said he would remain a teacher at the school and hoped to help in athletics in another capacity if that were possible.

Owens had been an assistant coach at Brookwood since 2005 until taking the Chattahoochee job last season. Owens was on the staff of Brookwood’s 2006 state runner-up team and 2010 state championship team. The Cougars were 4-6 in Owens’ only season.

Owens was the first head coach at Peachtree Ridge and coached there for two seasons. Owens also had been an assistant at McEachern and his alma mater, Presbyterian College.

‘’Very few people can say they made a career out of their passion, and I’ve coached and taught young people for 25 years at some great places and programs and been involved with some first-class people at McEachern, Brookwood, Peachtree Ridge and now Chattahoochee,’’ Owens said. “It’s just come to a point where I can’t physically do those duties. It is what it is.’’