Fossil Ridge head coach Doug Dulany is retiring after 18 years at the helm. Bob Booth Special to the Star-Telegram
Fossil Ridge head coach Doug Dulany is retiring after 18 years at the helm. Bob Booth Special to the Star-Telegram

Keller Citizen

Keller Fossil Ridge baseball coach retiring to become ‘Uber driver’

By Randy Sachs

Special to the Star-Telegram

July 21, 2017 03:37 PM

After 18 years at the helm of the successful Keller Fossil Ridge baseball program, Doug Dulany said it’s time for new priorities.

Dulany’s retirement was publicly announced last week so that he can spend more time with his family while taking part in his second-favorite sport.

But a new role for Dulany is at the top of the list at home.

“My wife (Denise, a counselor at Keller Middle School) has been the Uber driver to all events and appointments in the past, so now it’s my time to take over that role and let her focus on her job and activities,” Dulany said.

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With a son hitting his stride as a golfer and a daughter entrenched in show choir and drill team activities, Dulany said the time was right to step away as head coach of the Panthers’ baseball team.

“As we were going through the season and as we were going into the playoffs, it kind of became clear to me that I probably would retire,” Dulany said.

Dulany, 53, is just the second baseball coach in Fossil Ridge history, coming to the school in the fall of 1999.

That’s the thing that lasts, is all those relationships with the parents and kids. I’ll remember some of the games — the really good wins and the really hurtful losses. But I’ll remember those relationships more than anything.

Doug Dulany

He leaves the Panthers program after taking it to the playoffs eight times, reaching the regional semifinals twice.

Dulany started his coaching career at Bruceville-Eddy and then spent 10 years at Waco Midway.

Overall, Dulany accumulated a 400-261 record.

It took six years after his arrival at Fossil Ridge before the Panthers made their postseason appearance.

This past season, the Panthers went four rounds deep to the Region I semifinals with a team that may have seen the best coaching of his career.

Dulany noted they had some big averages in the lineup and a big arm on the hill, “but everything else was just ‘team,’ a team effort,” he said. “They found ways to overachieve. It was one of the best coaching jobs and most rewarding.”

He noted, though, he thought the most talented team was in 2013, but that squad was within a strike of getting past Arlington Martin early in the playoffs.

But a perfect storm of issues made it clear this was the time to step away.

His son Kaelen, 13, is a competitive golfer and had recently made the decision to focus on that sport and forgo baseball.

Daughter Peyton, 15, is a Tribe show choir member and Indianette at Keller.

Nothing but respect for @FRHS_Baseball! Thanks for a great ride! #RidgeNation https://t.co/mGwNx7pxzi

— Fossil Ridge HS (@FossilRidgeAdmi) May 27, 2017

“When Kaelen made the decision to give up baseball and focus on golf, that was what pushed me over the edge to retire,” Dulany said. “We both have a passion for golf and at 3:00 each day, I can be on the course with him — sort of a no-brainer.”

Showing up to Peyton’s activities is also a major influence for Dulany, who knows the next three years will fly by.

“I want to be as much a part of her life as possible,” Dulany said.

Dulany also has a son, Trace, 24, attending Texas Wesleyan, and another daughter, Hope, 21, attending UT Tyler.

Also, this spring the family will participate in an activity not conducted in Dulany home for the last 29 years — spring break.

As a result, as Dulany steps away, the Panthers will be under the direction of previous assistant, Bruce Holmes.

Dulany said he’ll miss the relationship with all his players and fellow coaches and teachers.

“That’s the thing that lasts, is all those relationships with the parents and kids,” he said. “I’ll remember some of the games — the really good wins and the really hurtful losses. But I’ll remember those relationships more than anything.”

And there is one ideal job Dulany is gearing up for in retirement.

“I think my dream job is to caddy for my son on a tour.”

This story has been corrected.