Opp softball coaches fired

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Allison Gregory and Tim Grimes have been hired to take over the softball program at Opp High School, after Amy Harrison and Wayne Harrison were terminated from their positions as head coach and assistant coach on Friday morning.

Opp City Schools superintendent Michael Smithart said Harrison and her father, Wayne, were let go because it was in the “best interest” of the school.

“We looked at it and we just felt like in the best interest of what we’re trying to do. We just needed to do something different,” he said. “When we started to look at the direction of the program, we just felt like we needed to go in a different direction.”

Smithart added that there wasn’t a specific incident that led to the Harrisons’ firings.

“It has very little to do with wins and losses,” he said. “It really doesn’t.”

Before Harrison was fired, the Lady Bobcats’ varsity record was 7-14.

Harrison said she was called to meet with three OCS administrators when she was informed of their decision to fire her.

“All they told me was that they were heading in a new direction,” Harrison said in a telephone interview Monday morning. “I really hurt for the girls — the ones that really cared.”

Harrison said she hopes the girls finish the season on a positive note.

“Five coaches in five years doesn’t speak highly about the program,” she said. “I hope they have a good season because they are a good group of girls. I wish them good luck.”

Harrison served as an instructional aid at Opp Middle School and Smithart said she had already submitted a letter of resignation as of Saturday night, when he talked about the firings.

Gregory and Grimes began their coaching duties on the junior varsity and varsity teams Friday night.