TWIN FALLS — Allyn Reynolds, head coach of the Twin Falls High School football team, will retire at the end of the school year.
Reynolds, 58, is currently a PE/health teacher and an athletic trainer at Twin Falls. He served as head football coach for 11 years, and as an assistant for nearly two decades prior to that. The Twin Falls school board announced his resignation from his positions as coach and trainer on Thursday.
Reynolds said the decision was hard, but he knew it was the right time for him to retire altogether.
“I’ve been in it 33 years and had a great ride at Twin Falls High School,” he told the Times-News over the phone on Wednesday. “I still like what I’m doing, but I know some teachers who’ve hung on too long and gotten negative or started to care less, and I don’t want to be that way.”
Reynolds, a Buhl native, began coaching for the Bruins in 1986. He worked as an assistant coach under Jon Jund, one of Reynolds’ football coaches at Buhl High School, where Reynolds won two state championships and graduated in 1978.
“If I was going to thank anybody for getting me into this thing, it’s Jon,” he said. “He showed up to my house one day in summer and convinced me to look into a job (at Twin Falls).”
Reynolds has taught health and physical education at Twin Falls during his tenure, though that wasn’t originally his plan.
After he earned his undergraduate degree from UNLV, where he was a quarterback and played behind future NFL star Randall Cunningham, he got a master’s degree in exercise and sports science from the University of Arizona. He wanted to be an athletic trainer and earned his first job as one at Princeton University.
However, he felt the East Coast wasn’t the right place for him and quit shortly after taking the job.
“I had nowhere to go, so I came home,” he said. “Fortunately the state had just put in a requirement that students had to have health education. I wanted to be a trainer, but after talking with my friends, I realized that those jobs weren’t as available.”
Reynolds considered taking the football head coaching job at Twin Falls when it became available in 1994 and 2003, but chose not to because his five children were still growing up. He took the position in 2007 after they’d graduated.
Now, he said the process has come full circle, and he has 11 grandchildren that he wants to be able to watch grow up.
“I have grandkids in Iowa playing sports, and I want to go see them play,” he said. “It’s hard to do that when your an educator and coach who’s committed to the school.”
His two kids still in the Twin Falls area — Adam and Abbe — were the hardest to break the news to.
“My son’s on the football staff, and my daughter has been hanging around the football field since she was 3,” he said. “They took it pretty hard, but they’re accepting it.”
Twin Falls athletic director Ted Reynolds said Allyn Reynolds came to his office last week and informed him of his decision.
“We were just having a normal conversation, and then he said, ‘I just need to let you know I’m going to resign,’ Ted Reynolds said. “That’s not what I wanted to hear ... but when it’s time, you know it’s time.”
He said Allyn Reynolds was an upstanding coach who earned his respect.
“Before I got here, I knew he ran a class program,” Ted Reynolds said. “He’s a very, very good football coach. The way he treats those players is crazy good, as far as I’m concerned. He sets high standards for himself and his staff and players.”
“He treated me well and with respect, and I wish I had an opportunity to get to know him better,” he added. “I wish nothing but the best for him.”
Ted Reynolds said the job listing for football coach has been posted. He said he’s not looking to find another Allyn Reynolds.
“I don’t think you can try to fill anybody’s shoes,” he said. “We’re going to look for someone who treats the kids right, recruits, retains kids, has good relations with community, but most of all, you have to be you. You have do what’s made you successful as a coach.”
Allyn Reynolds said he’s rooting for the Bruins in the job search.
“We’ve got good guys on our staff, and I expect we’ll have some good applicants, so I hope they hire the best person possible,” he said. “You don’t put 33 years into something and not care about it later on.”