Merchant turns down De La Salle football coaching job

The Detroit News

Scott Merchant is not accepting the football head coaching job at Warren De La Salle after all, the school said Tuesday.

Chippewa Valley High School Head Coach Scott Merchant.

"Coach Scott Merchant contacted the De La Salle administration on Tuesday to inform us that after much thought and discussions with his wife, he has decided not to accept the offer to become the next head football coach at De La Salle," a statement from Warren De La Salle read. "He informed us that while he was excited by the opportunity, he realized that he and his family were not ready to make a career move.

"Scott is a terrific person and we wish him the very best."

The turnabout comes after an announcement Friday that Merchant would be replacing Paul Verska, who retired after last season. Merchant has coached at Clinton Township Chippewa Valley for the past seven years, leading the school to the state playoffs five times.

Merchant, 44, started coaching as a 27-year-old in the Catholic League with University of Detroit Jesuit in 1998.

“It’s been a whirlwind, definitely emotional," said Merchant in an interview with The Detroit News last week. "This was a difficult decision because I have great kids and coaches at Chippewa Valley and the district has treated me very well.

“It was going to take a very unique situation for me to leave. I am a product of the Catholic League and the Catholic Identity was the deciding factor. To be able to share the outstanding experience that I had as a high school student with others is very attractive. I have tremendous respect for all the schools and coaches in the Central Division, which I believe is the most physical in the state.”

Merchant played football at Birmingham Brother Rice and Albion College.