Lane McLaughlin has been let go as the head coach at Carrollwood Day School just days before the Patriots' preseason opener at Daytona Beach Halifax Academy. McLaughlin has been Carrollwood Day's football coach for nine years, compiling a 61-31 record.
"They called me today and said that I had been let go," McLaughlin said. "I could kind of see it coming. I'd like to thank everyone who has been involved with our program for the past 10 years, especially (former athletic director) Frank Mabry for hiring me. I enjoyed my time there and I'm sure they will see me on the field somewhere else."
Carrollwood Day athletic director Baker Mabry said the decision to remove McLaughlin as coach so close to the start of the season was something that couldn't be avoided.
"It was not a decision that we wanted to make, but it became more obvious that it was a decision that we had to make," Mabry said.
Mabry said he will meet with his staff in the coming days to decide on an interim head coach. He said the coach will come from the group of current assistant coaches on staff. Whoever is named head coach will remain the interim coach for the entire season, according to Mabry.
One assistant coach helping out for the Patriots is former Bucs head coach Jon Gruden, whose son, Jayson, is a sophomore slot back.
The Patriots were 7-4 last season and advanced to the Class 2A regional semifinals, a 34-0 loss. McLaughlin also led Carrollwood Day to a playoff appearance in 2013.