Snohomish hires Smalley as Panthers’ football coach

SNOHOMISH — Snohomish High School’s search for a new football coach led all the way to Park City, Utah — and that’s where it ended.

Park City High School head coach Kai Smalley agreed last week to become the head football coach at Snohomish. He replaces Mark Perry, who resigned after 18 seasons.

Smalley is a Northwest native who grew up in Oregon and played college football at the University of Oregon. The 33-year-old will be moving to Washington for the first time, along with his wife and two children, following the completion of the school year at Park City.

Though Smalley is from Oregon, he is not without connections to Snohomish County. He served as an assistant under current Glacier Peak High School football coach Rory Rosenbach at Marist High School in Eugene, Ore. It was Rosenbach who informed Smalley of the opening at Snohomish, Glacier Peak’s crosstown rival.

“The trash talking has already begun,” Rosenbach said with a laugh. “It will be fun. I only got to compete with coach Perry and his staff for one year and that was special just because of the relationship I had with those guys. This will be kind of a different relationship. That was a mentor-mentee relationship. This is more of a colleague and we have known each other since I was finishing college and he was starting college.

“It will be a lot of fun.”

Smalley had a sense of humor about the prospect of competing against his good friend.

“Any chance I can get to go try and lay one on him, I’m good with that,” he said.

When Glacier Peak and Snohomish face off it will be the first time Smalley and Rosenbach, who is godfather to one of Smalley’s children, have met on opposing sidelines — well, sort off.

“It will be unless you count all the times that he tried to run a scout team against my defense and I made him look silly,” Smalley said.

Smalley and his wife drove to Washington from Utah for an interview and stayed with Rosenbach. Smalley was on his way back to Utah when Snohomish officials called to officially offer him the job.

“I accepted about one second later,” he said.

Smalley had resigned his position at Park City to spend more time with his family, but when he found out about the Snohomish job, it was too good to pass up.

“I swore I wasn’t going to apply for any head-coaching jobs,” he said. “And when this offer came up, I looked at my wife and she just kind of smiled and said, ‘Do it.’”

Smalley takes over a Snohomish football team that posted a 2-8 record last fall. He said Perry has been very helpful in assisting him as he begins the transition process.

“I’ve been in constant contact with coach Perry, just picking his brain, finding out how he has done things in the past and finding out how I can come in and help build off of the success that they’ve had,” Smalley said. “Coach Perry has been a remarkable guy to work with. He has made himself available. I was on the phone with him for two and a half hours last Friday talking about some topics and questions I had about coming in.

“I’m very impressed with what he did there. Somebody doesn’t stay a head coach for 18 years for no reason.”

Aaron Lommers covers prep sports for The Herald. Follow him on twitter @aaronlommers and contact him at alommers@heraldnet.com.

More in Sports

Lake Stevens girls show grit in 66-58 win over Glacier Peak

The Vikings rally from 13 down at half to take over sole possession of 1st place in Wesco 4A.

Friday’s prep basketball scores, recaps

Once again, a variety of local high school basketball players turned in… Continue reading

Bearcats pull away from Jackson in 79-67 win

Monroe’s Colby Kyle scores 24 points in his return from injury and Spencer Davidson tacks on 21.

Silvertips set to host pair of East Division powerhouses

Brandon and Swift Current make rare appearances in Everett this weekend.

‘Fear’ drives UWs Carter III back to the gym every single day

The freshman PG tries to get in 500 shots a day on his quest to be a success on the floor and in life.

Friday’s prep stars of the night

George Reidy, G, Cedar Park Christian Reidy, a senior, scored 38 of… Continue reading

Everett’s Stephan Erosa, left, competes against Arlington Brantly StupeyThursday night at Arlington High School in Arlington on January 18, 2018. The Eagles won 37-25.(Kevin Clark / The Daily Herald)
Arlington wrestlers scrap to 37-25 win over Everett

Aggressive lineup moves pay off for the Eagles in a big Wesco 3A North win over the Seagulls.

Additions of Murray, Sharp give Silvertips depth

After a ‘crazy busy’ week upon being traded to Everett, the new duo is finally settling in.

Coupeville boys basketball celebrating 101st anniversary Friday

The Coupeville High School boys basketball program is celebrating its… Continue reading

Most Read