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Jacob Topp

Varsity Head Coach

Jacob Topp is beginning his first season as Head Football Coach at South Lyon East in the fall of 2021.  Topp is joining the Cougars from Detroit Country Day School, where was an assistant football coach, basketball coach, and history teacher.  In his 5 years at Country Day, Topp was part of a staff that made 3 state championship appearances in 2016, 2019, & 2020-2021.  Detroit Country Day won the Division 4 state football championship in 2020-2021.  Topp primarily worked with the varsity offensive and defensive lines.  He coached two 2x all-state lineman, in addition to numerous all-region and all-metro award winners.


Prior to Detroit Country Day, Topp coached At Marian University. At Marian University, he helped the Knights to a 6-5 record, and coached an AFCA NAIA All-American honoree, in addition to 2 more MSFA all-conference honorees. Prior to Marian University, Topp spent a season as an assistant coach with Aurora University in Illinois. In one season with Aurora, Topp served as the offensive line and tight ends coach as well as the director of football operations. He guided a pair of student-athletes to first team all-conference honors and guided one offensive lineman to all-north region second team honors. His offensive line led NCAA Division III in sacks allowed as the team gave up just 3 sacks in 10 games during a 5-5 season in 2012. His offensive line also had the highest yards per carry average in a decade at Aurora with 4.6 yards per carry in 2012.


Before taking the job at Aurora, Topp served a season as an assistant coach at Wartburg College. In 2011, he served as an assistant coach for the defensive line and was an assistant strength and conditioning coach for the Knights. He assisted with a team that was ranked first in scoring defense in the Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference and ranked second in sacks per game. Topp also saw two of his athletes earn All-IIAC honors, one of whom earned third team all-american honors.


Prior to Wartburg, Topp was an assistant coach for the offensive line with Minnesota State-Moorhead in 2010. He began his coaching career with NCAA Division II powerhouse Grand Valley State University where he was a graduate assistant working with the offense.  GVSU was the GLIAC champion and the NCAA Division II national runner-up in 2009.


Topp was a four-year letter winner and started 23 games at Grand Valley State University where he was part of two national championship teams in 2005 and 2006, and a record setting 40-game win streak. During his time at GVSU, the Lakers won four conference titles and Topp earned all-conference honors as a senior. He was also a two-time Academic All-GLIAC honoree.


Topp graduated from Grand Valley State University in 2008 with a degree in history and political science. He earned his Masters degree in education from the University of Michigan in 2016. Topp resides in Livonia with his wife, Alison.




Mark Nowicki

Varsity Defensive Coordinator, Defensive Backs Coach

Alax Barnes
Varsity Running Backs and Defensive Backs

Alax graduated from South Lyon High School in 2009 playing football all four years. After
Graduation he joined the United States Marine Corps serving for 4 years in active duty, in that
time he deployed to Afghanistan. While in the Marine Corps he was able to join the base
football team in Twentynine Palms CA traveling across the U.S. to face other military base
teams. After the Marine Corps he went into the Army reserves until finally ending his military
career in 2019.
His first coaching opportunity came in 2019 joining South Lyon East High School as an assistant
Freshman coach. He currently is coaching running backs and defensive backs on varsity.

Jason LaPerna
Varsity Linebackers Coach

Coach LaPerna has been coaching youth football for nearly 20 years and is a 1996 graduate of South Lyon High School. This is his 4th year with the Cougars after coaching for the South Lyon Panthers for 14 seasons dating back to 2003. In addition to coaching, he was President of the South Lyon Panthers for 8 years as well as President of the Livingston County Junior Football League for 6 years. During this time, Coach LaPerna helped coordinate improvements for a better, safer game with USA Football and other local coaching leaders. Coach LaPerna has two children in the East Football program including incoming Senior Jayden and Junior Kellen.


Ryan Scriven
Varsity Defensive Line Coach

This is Coach Scriven's first year coaching high school football.  Coach Scriven played a number of positions during his career, but most notably he started as a Defensive End and Outside Linebacker for Farmington Hills Harrison High School. Coach Scriven was a part of the 2010 14-0 state championship team. In his senior year at Harrison, he recorded 55 tackles and 10 sacks.

Coach Scriven attended Eastern Michigan University graduating with a bachelor's degree in broadcasting.  He is currently working as a programmer, and working on his graduate degree at EMU.

Chris Kaminski
Varsity Quarterback Coach

Coach Kaminski graduated from South Lyon East in 2019 having played football, basketball, and track. He was a part of the first ever football team in school history to beat rival school South Lyon as well as the first ever team in school history to win a playoff game. He went on to continue his football career and academics at Eastern Michigan where he played quarterback and earned his degree in quantitative economics with a minor in mathematics. Chris was a part of two bowl eligible teams during his time at EMU (Quick Lane Bowl and Liberty Bowl) and received academic awards for third highest overall GPA on the team. 

Nick Poulos
Varsity Wide Receivers Coach

Coach Poulos is a 2017 graduate of Livonia Stevenson High School. Upon graduating from Stevenson, he attended Wayne State University where he studied Exercise and Sports Science. In 2018, he served as a Student Assistant for the Warriors, working with the Defensive Line and Special Teams. 

In 2021, he returned to coaching at Livonia Stevenson coaching the Wide Receivers on the Varsity. During the 2022 season, he moved over to the Running Backs, and was the Special Teams Coordinator. Coach Poulos enters his first season at South Lyon East this Fall. 

Justin Wagoner
Director of Football Operations

Coach Wagoner is starting his fifth season at South Lyon East, two years as a JV/Freshman assistant, and now in the role of Director of Football Operations for a third season. He is also a Special Education Co-Teacher in Algebra 1, US History, and World Studies at South Lyon East while also supporting the athletic department with marketing, social media, and other projects. Coach Wagoner graduated from Brentwood School in the United Kingdom in 2010. He graduated from Central Michigan in 2017 with a degree in Special Education and History. During his time at Central Michigan, he was a part of the Video Operations staff for Central Michigan Athletics. He was the main assistant to the Football Video Coordinator. With Central Michigan Football, Coach Wagoner was a part of four bowl games and won the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl. Coach Wagoner currently resides in Livonia, Michigan.  




Ed Donovan
Junior Varsity Head Coach/Offensive Coordinator

Coach Donovan enters his fourth year at South Lyon East. Coach Donovan is the Head Coach and Offensive Coordinator of the South Lyon East Junior Varsity Team. Coach Donovan has spent 15 years coaching various levels of youth football while living in Chicago and Michigan. Coach Donovan graduated from Eastern Illinois University in 1990 and has a B.A. in criminal justice and community health. Coach Donovan lives in South Lyon, Michigan, with his two children Kailtyn and Tommy. Kaitlyn currently attends Illinois State University, where she is a student-athlete, who is studying nursing and competing on the Illinois State Women’s Gymnastics Team. Tommy is a high school Senior who plays multiple sports.


Aaron Bush
JV Offensive/Defensive Line

Coach Bush is entering his 9th season as part of the East Football Staff.  The past 4 years have been spent as an OL/DL coach across all three levels.  Prior to that, Coach Bush coordinated film & Hudl for all Varsity football games.  With over ten years experience coaching multiple sports, Coach Bush has a drive to connect with the athletes and maximize their growth potential.  He graduated from the University of Michigan with a BA in Business Administration and is in his 20th year with Ford Motor Company.  Coach Bush lives in South Lyon with his wife Jen, and two children, Brady and Sarah.

Mike Welton
JV Assistant Coach Offense

Coach Welton is entering his third season with East Football.  As a JV Football Coach, he coaches offense and supports the East Varsity Football Team with game day Hudl film.  Previously, Coach Welton spent 8 years coaching various levels of youth football in addition to coaching other youth sports.  His passion is to develop student athletes that excel on the football field and in the classroom.  Coach Welton lives in South Lyon with his wife Rita and two children Riley and Daniel.  Daniel is part of the East Football 2025 class and Riley is a 2022 East graduate attending University of Alabama.



Jacob Jacovetti
JV Linebackers



Chad Stuckey




Ken Smoot
Athletic Trainer




2023 Coaching Staff

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