Bill Ross not ready to retire

Breanna Mehringer

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Ever since the wrestling team won the Class 6A title last month, rumors have been going around about coach Bill Ross retiring.

On Thursday, Ross said he is not retiring.

“This season was pretty special,” Ross said. “Any time you finish the season winning a state championship, it’s special. Our seniors have all been wrestling since (an) early age, and they’ve all known each other for so long. I’ve watched these boys grow up since they were about 6 years old — we’re more like a family.

“It’s been a magical season all around.”

Over the past 12 years, Derby was close to winning a team title. The Panthers ended a 36-year drought when it won in February.

“We’ve brought home nine state trophies since 2001,” Ross said. “This is our first trophy out of those nine with the No. 1 on it. I want to go back and coach again knowing I’ve experienced it all — from third, second, first. I want to go back as a returning state champ. I’m not done. I still got some years left in me where I can benefit some kids.”