Sheridan Activities Director Don Julian is stepping down from his role as head football coach just a month after leading the Broncs to their third straight Class 4A state championship. Julian confirmed initial reports of his resignation on a call with the Star-Tribune on Tuesday.
The school district is expected to make a formal announcement regarding the move on Wednesday.
Julian is resigning to spend more time with his parents on the family’s ranch near Kemmerer. It’s a decision that Julian said has been about a year in the making.
“I have a father who is struggling with some health issues, and more and more I’ve felt like my wife and I need to take a bigger role in his care and for both my parents,” Julian said. “We felt like it was time for me to give back a bit and it was time for me to make a decision to free up time so I can spend time there.”
He is unsure how long his absence from football will be or if he will return to the coaching ranks at all.
“I feel like the next step is what we’re supposed to do and step away from football,” Julian said. “How long that will be, I don’t know the future, but I know it’s important for me.”
Julian’s football career began in Kemmerer, where he played in high school. He began his head coaching career at Riverton (1993-2001), where he led the Wolverines to four Class 3A state championships (1994, 1997-99). Two of those championships came in back-to-back undefeated seasons (1998-99), which were part of a 26-game winning streak, tied for the eighth longest in state history. While at Riverton he coached eight Super 25 selections and earned Wyoming Coaches Association Coach of the Year honors in each championship season.
Julian left Riverton for the University of Wyoming, where he joined former head coach Vic Koenning’s staff as running backs coach. He was the only member of Koenning’s staff to be retained when Joe Glenn became the Cowboys’ head coach. Julian then became director of football operations before taking over as assistant athletics director for development with Wyoming’s Cowboy Joe Club.
“I had all these opportunities, the one in Laramie was very exciting and helped me grow,” Julian said. “Then the one in Sheridan, AD and football coach was a combo I hadn’t been able to do before. It’s been incredibly rewarding.”
After eight years at his alma mater, Julian returned to high school football as head coach and activities director at Sheridan. There he coached for 11 seasons, winning five overall state championships and three straight (2015-17). Sheridan advanced to the semifinals in 10 of Julian’s 11 years. He was named Super 25 Coach of the Year in 2009 and in 2017. He coached 23 Super 25 selections as the head coach of the Broncs.
Overall, Julian steps away having won nine state championships in 20 seasons as head coach with a 165-44 record.
“I’ve never lived out of the state and I’ve always been a Wyoming guy and it’s been good for me to spend time in state,” he said. “All three of those stops have special memories.”
Julian is primarily stepping away as head football coach now and will first open the position to assistant coaches. Those staffers will have the first opportunity to apply for the position, which Julian and the school board have approval on.
Once the head football coach position is filled, then the school district and Julian will find someone to supersede his duties as activities director.
“I’m thankful for what has gone on in Sheridan in our football program,” Julian said. “I am so proud and humbled.”