Warren Mills resigns as Lakers’ track coach
It’s true, Warren Mills stepped down from his longtime post as the Lakers’ track and field coach.
But the face of the North Tahoe program for the past 38 years is not going far.
“I’ll be at the races,” Mills said. “I’ll be on that turn where I always am yelling and screaming. I’ll have a yellow hat on. I’ll do everything I always do.”
Just not as North Tahoe’s track and field coach, as Mills said he resigned from the position in November.
“It was just time. It’s been 38 years,” said Mills, adding that he will remain head coach of the cross country program for at least two more years. “I promised my sophomores that we’d ride that one out together.”
Mills is the only cross-country coach in the school’s history; he’s headed the track and field program the majority of those 38 years.
In that time he’s earned the respect of many in the track and field community, none more so than Skip Piechocinski, the Lakers’ former throwing coach who’s taking over the program.
“He’s an irreplaceable stone,” Piechocinski said of Mills. “He’s brought everything to this school ” his energy, the level of competition he gets the kids to rise to. It’s amazing to watch him.
“He’s my mentor. If I need questions answered, I go to him. I’m a throwing coach, but I don’t have nearly the knowledge he has.”
Mills said part of the reason for resigning as head track coach was to spend more time with his family.
“I have a son who coaches track and cross country in Sacramento, and I’d like to see how he’s doing. That kind of cheers me up. And I have a daughter who’s playing rugby at San Francisco State, so it kind of frees me up to go see her,” he said. “So I kind of want to see my kids a little more on the weekend.”
Asked if he thinks he will miss his coaching duties, Mills said he already does.
“I miss it right now,” he said. “I miss every minute of it …
“What I don’t miss ” and I can laugh about this now ” I don’t miss the first week of practice when there’s a snowstorm. I don’t miss trying to figure out what to do when the weather is cruddy outside ” I don’t miss that.
“I don’t miss the fact that they’re calling for rain on Saturday, and Skip’s trying to figure out how to get everybody eligible and who’s going to get there and how they’re going to get there and what are they going to do, and if he’ll even be able to watch them. Those are things I don’t have to worry about anymore.”
” Luke Beasley contributed to this story