Photos: U-High, East Ascension, Plaquemine score key wins in Week 7 Baton Rouge-area prep football _lowres

Advocate staff photo by JOHN OUBRE -- East Ascension coach Paul Bourgeois

Paul Bourgeois isn’t sure what his next move will be. But Bourgeois made a significant step toward the future by resigning as head football coach and athletic director at East Ascension High.

“I haven’t felt like I thought I should the last couple of years,” he said Monday. “I’ve been so tired, and really I’ve stayed that way. I’ve gone to doctors, and everything was fine. What I finally realized is that I’ve got a case of burnout. When that happens, I think the logical thing is to do something different. I just don’t know what that is yet.”

Bourgeois spent five seasons as head coach at EAHS. The Spartans were 5-6 this season, including a 3-2 record in District 5-5A and a playoff loss to state runner-up John Ehret. The Sulphur native had a record of 31-25 at EAHS.

Before coming to East Ascension, he had a successful stint at Sulphur, leading the Tornadoes to a Class 5A runner-up finish in 2006. Sulphur lost to District 3-5A rival Acadiana in the title game.

Bourgeois said East Ascension started advertising the position Monday to begin the process of hiring a new coach. His best year at EAHS was 2013. The Spartans were the No. 3 playoff seed for nonselect schools in Class 5A and finished 9-3, losing to Covington in the regional playoff round.

Bourgeois will remain at the school as a teacher but said he is looking to move his family back to the Sulphur area in the months ahead in advance of his daughter starting high school in the fall.

EAHS Principal Traci McCorkle said the AD/football job will be advertised until Jan. 5. She said a group of four to six finalists likely will be named, based on the number of applicants.

Ideally, McCorkle said East Ascension would like to announce its new head coach by Jan. 15. She also praised Bourgeois for his work.

Spartan assistant coaches Darnell Lee and Keagan McCready are reportedly among those interested in applying for the job.

“Paul is leaving the program in better shape than it was in before he came here,” McCorkle said. “He not only did a tremendous job of building the program, he also worked to build a solid group of young men to represent our school and their families. We thank him for that.

“Right now we’re not sure where the (hiring) process will lead us. I’m hoping for a strong group of applicants that make the job for our search committee extremely difficult. That way, East Ascension will definitely be the winner.”