Ex-Seahawk, Cougar hired as Monroe football coach

Former Seattle Seahawk and Washington State Cougar Michael Bumpus is the new head football coach at Monroe High School.

Monroe athletic director Mark Henderson announced the hiring Thursday.

Bumpus, who lives in Monroe and runs a personal-fitness business in the city, said he’s excited and eager for the opportunity to take over the Bearcats.

“I’ve lived in Monroe the past three years,” he said. “My wife went to Monroe High. I’m definitely a Bearcat.”

Bumpus replaces Brett Jay, who resigned last month after one season.

Henderson said Bumpus’s enthusiasm for the game made him stand out during the interview process.

“He interviewed extremely well,” Henderson said. “Just his excitement and passion for the community of Monroe and his passion for our kids really stood out. … I think what pushed Michael over the top is we knew we were getting the right guy for kids.”

Bumpus takes over a program that went 7-3 and reached the Class 4A Quad-District playoffs this past season.

“I’m not going to change too much,” Bumpus said. “Obviously, I want to make the program my own, but they have a good thing going. The guy who was in there, Brett Jay, I got a chance to know him. We’re pretty similar. There’s just a different guy at the head position. My goal is to keep it similar for the kids, just add my own flair to it.”

Henderson said he expects Bumpus to build on the foundation already in place.

“We’re going to be the same offensively,” Henderson said. “He’s an offensive-minded guy. He wants to just keep things rolling and take that next step.”

Originally from Culver City, California, Bumpus was a standout wide receiver at Washington State, where he was a four-year starter and still holds the school records for career receptions (197).

Bumpus signed with the Seattle Seahawks as a free agent after the 2008 NFL draft. He spent two years in Seattle before signing with the BC Lions of the Canadian Football League.

In recent years, Bumpus has helped coach in numerous camps and clinics. He coached at Redmond High School for three seasons, working his way up to offensive coordinator, and most recently served as an offensive coach for Snohomish in 2014.

“My dream after playing ball was always to be a head coach,” said Bumpus, who plans to serve as the Bearcats’ offensive coordinator. “I’ve been in the community for three years. I train a lot of athletes at the high school and I’ve developed a relationship with half the guys on the team. … As soon as the job was open, I knew that’s what I wanted to do.”

Although the start of high school football practice is six months away, Bumpus is eager to get started.

“I’ve already been on campus. I’m in the weight room everyday with them already,” he said. “I’m ready to go. I’m fired up.”

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