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MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Gerald Dockery, the Georgia Doom’s head coach for the final five games of the 2018 season, won’t return as the team’s coach.
The team’s former offensive coordinator, who took over for Derek Stingley four games into the season, said in a phone interview with 41NBC’s Tucker Sargent Monday that he’s back in his hometown of Houston, Texas.
“I told them I’d be willing to help or any other aspect that I can, but as far as me being back as a coach, I’m not going to be back.”
While Dockery won’t be in town for another season, he believes the team will be.
“I think they are going to be back,” he said. “I think they’re going to have to do some things to really get the trust of the fan base and players and things like that.”
The Doom qualified for the American Arena League playoffs in their first season but did not compete in the postseason after team owner Kevin Adkins opted out by e-mail, according to AAL president Jack Bowman.
Multiple attempts to speak with Adkins went unanswered until he sent a text message to 41NBC’s Ty Wilson on June 13.
“I will not be answering anything (sic) questions about the Doom not going to the playoffs,” Adkins wrote. “We had a great season and look forward to next year.”
Bowman also told 41NBC the Doom would be back for a second season.
“The Georgia Doom are in good standing with the AAL and we look forward to many great years of the Doom playing in Macon in the AAL,” he wrote in a June 11 e-mail.
Dockery, who played four seasons in the Arena Football League before joining the coaching ranks, was never told exactly why the Doom couldn’t play in the playoffs, but assumed after talking with “other sources” it had something to do with the team’s finances.
“Kevin never really gave too many details if that was completely it,” he said. “I didn’t really dig into it any much further than that because once I realized that we were out of it–that there was nothing that we could do to appeal it or anything like that, the league had made its mind up, made a decision–I just kind of stepped away from it at that point.”
When asked how his experience with the Doom compared to previous indoor football experiences, Dockery said things could have been “better.”
“I would say 90 to 95% of the season everything he (Adkins) did was good. Just this last part of it, I’m not sure what happened. I just think that when you leave people to lean on their own understanding, everybody can say what they want to say or make it what they want to make it based on what’s being shown.”
Several players are still waiting for their final paycheck, according to Dockery.
“Whether he (Adkins) wants to speak to the media about next year, I think that would be a good move on his part to show the people he can stand in front of the camera and say, ‘Hey, this is what we’re going to do. This is what happened. We’re going to ensure this doesn’t happen again. We need fan support.'”
“I think that would be a good move.”
The Atlanta Havoc, the team the Doom beat in their final regular season game to qualify for the postseason, beat the Richmond Roughriders 58-50 in the AAL Championship Game on Saturday.
“Just to sit there and see two teams play that you know for a fact you would have dominated in that game, for us not to be there, I just kind of shied away from it,” Dockery said.