Weslaco High football coach resigns

Weslaco High head football coach Michael Salinas, left, and Weslaco East head football coach Michael Burget have a discussion as coaches and athletic directors attend a UIL Realignment meeting at the Region One Education Service Center Thursday, Feb. 1, 2018, in Edinburg. (Joel Martinez | jmartinez@themonitor.com)

After rebuilding one of the most storied programs in Valley history, Michael Salinas is hanging up his coaching headset.

Michael Salinas resigned as Weslaco High School’s football coach and athletic coordinator on Tuesday to pursue a job outside the coaching field, according to a school district news release.

“Although this was a difficult decision, at this time I believe this is the right career move for me and my family,” Michael Salinas said in the press release. “I would like to thank the players, assistant coaches, staff, administration, school board and the community of Weslaco for welcoming me and my wife and I thank them for all their support. If I was going to continue my career as a football coach, there is no other place that I would rather be than at Weslaco High School. But after 18 years of coaching football, I am moving on to a different career.”

Salinas coached the Panthers for two seasons, leading them to a 13-8 overall record. Weslaco went 11-2 this season, winning area-round and bi-district championships before losing in the third round of the playoffs to Austin Lake Travis.

Sources indicate Salinas met with his players and staff Tuesday to give them the news personally. Salinas was a proud member of the Weslaco ISD community, often attending sporting events, and supporting the Panthers.

“We thank Michael Salinas for his two seasons as head football coach and wish him well in his new job,” Weslaco ISD Athletic Director Oscar Riojas said in the press release.

Before coaching for Weslaco, Salinas was the football coach at Edinburg Vela for six years, where he went 36-20. Salinas led the SaberCats to the playoffs in each of his final three seasons, making it to the third round in 2015.

With a large class of juniors returning on offense, there is plenty of talent at Weslaco, and whoever assumes the role of head coach, will be set up to succeed right away.

sberrios-thomas@themonitor.com