Chris Miller coached West Linn to its only state championship in 2016. (Photo by Brad Cantor)
Chris Miller coached West Linn to its only state championship in 2016. (Photo by Brad Cantor)

Chris Miller has resigned as West Linn's football coach.

“I stepped down from coaching high school football to pursue a coaching opportunity in professional football,” Miller said by text message. “I am hopeful that an opportunity presents itself in the near future.”

Miller met with about 30 players during lunch Monday to announce his decision.

“I considered it over the last week and made a final decision Sunday,” Miller said.

It is the second time Miller has stepped down from the position. He initially resigned after the 2019 season to become an assistant coach with the XFL's Houston Roughnecks. When the XFL suspended operations in the spring of 2020, he opted to return to high school coaching and landed the job at Franklin in May 2020.

Shortly after, though, Keanon Lowe resigned as West Linn's coach, and Miller left Franklin to retake the West Linn position in July 2020. Last year, he led the Lions to a 6-0 record in the COVID-shortened spring season and an 11-2 mark in the fall, making the 6A semifinals before falling to Tualatin 35-13.

Miller helped make West Linn into a perennial 6A contender. He went 77-18 in eight seasons at West Linn, leading the Lions to their only state championship in 2016.

"It has been an awesome eight years coaching at WL!" Miller wrote. "We won a lot of football games, had fun doing it, and I made some lifelong friendships with several players and coaches along the way. At the end of the day, this is really what matters."

West Linn athletic director Brigham Baker said that the school has posted the position.

"We have some great kids here, so I'm sure we'll get some good applicants," Baker said. "Really, it's nice that Chris let us know now. He could've waited until June or July and really put us in a tight spot, so he helped us out, for sure.

"And obviously, he took our program to one of the state's elite levels. We're certainly sad about it, but he left us in a pretty good spot."