(12-6-22) Eastside (Indiana) football coach Todd Mason announced his resignation this week, including a lengthy letter sent to the media. Near the end of the statement he left these words that led to his decision-

My tenure at Eastside has been riddled with challenges, yet not from parents or student-athletes. The lack of institutional transparency and collaboration has left me exhausted mentally, physically and spiritually. I have lost my hope and belief that our educational leaders are willing to make decisions that are solely for the best for our students.

For Mason it was not because of lack of wins. In six seasons as the head coach he had a 54-18 record.Eastside has won at least nine games in each of the last four seasons and went 9-3 in 2022. The Blazers won their first sectional titles in program history in 2019 and 2021. In 2021 the Blazers went 13-1 and advanced to the semi-state game for the first time in program history.

Since 2019 Eastside did not lose a game in the Northeast Corner Conference (NECC )Small School Division. 

Complete statement:

I would first like to thank Eastside High School for the opportunity to lead the Blazer football program for the past six years, I can honestly say it has been the most rewarding and life-changing professional experience of my life. In those six years we have accomplished so much, but what I am most proud of is how our student-athletes have bought in to ALL IN; do right even when no one is looking. Championships come and go, character is forever.

I have been abundantly blessed by a football staff that understood, believed in, and enhanced character through the wonderful game of football – it certainly was not a one man show. In particular I would especially like to recognize Corey Schoon and Matt Dazey, two men of outstanding character that are also great football coaches. The countless hours, arguments, discussions, disagreements and agreements led to a special time in Blazer football history. Through transparent communication, teamwork, and collaboration we put our teams first and, in a position, to win football games and in life. I cannot put into words how much respect and appreciation I have for those two men and their families. All In takes a great deal of work and the EHS football staff has been selfless in the pursuit of greatness.

Our football players have been THEEE BEST, the most difficult part of teaching young men the game of football is relying on people other than yourself. Doing your 1/11th, trusting and loving your teammate, enjoying the grind, and believing in your coaches is not a natural characteristic exhibited by 14–18-year-old young men. OUR KIDS DID IT WITH A PASSION UNMATCHED BY ANY OTHER TEAMS I HAVE COACHED!!! I absolutely love our dudes; they are going to make a difference in the world.

Our community is second to none, they have backed our program and all of Eastside athletics with unconditional love. Opposing teams were absolutely amazed by our community backing and positive support for our programs. It was an honor to represent our community as the head football coach, I cannot express how thankful I am to be a member of the Eastside community.

To all the coaches we have competed with, I take my hat off to you. Incredible human beings such as Paul Sade, Mike Mosser, Andy Thomas, Brent Kunkel, Kyle Lindsay, Chris DePew, Monte Mawhorter, Chris Skinner, Jeff Adamson, Sherwood Haydock and Dave Snyder; you made us work our butts off to compete and I want to thank you for that!!

To my wife Dawn and daughter Reece, thank you for allowing me to chase my dreams and supporting everyone (staff, athletes and community) involved by being ALL IN every step of the way-I love you!!

My resignation is not the result of a single event, single person or season. My tenure at Eastside has been riddled with challenges, yet not from parents or student-athletes. The lack of institutional transparency and collaboration has left me exhausted mentally, physically and spiritually. I have lost my hope and belief that our educational leaders are willing to make decisions that are solely for the best for our students.

Future Blazers continue doing right, it does not go unnoticed. Best of luck!!

Finally, a big thank you to the media who did an unbelievable job of covering Eastside throughout my six seasons as head coach-it was certainly appreciated. ALL IN!

Todd Mason