Middies’ football coach resigns

Since 1989, there have been nine head football coaches at Middletown High School. That means for the last 24 years, the average coach has stayed less than three seasons. Here is the list of recent coaches:

Bill Conley

Jim Place

Joe Tresey

Chip Otten

Eric Tudor

Dick Martin

Ron Johnson

Jason Krause

Troy Everhart

After leading Middletown High School into the football playoffs his first season, Troy Everhart suffered through a 5-15 record the next two years, including 1-9 this season, the worst in the school’s 100-year-old history.

“I couldn’t identify the problem,” Everhart said while sitting in his office. “If you can’t identify the problem, you can’t fix the problem. So I looked into the mirror, and said, ‘It’s you.’”

So on Wednesday, just two weeks after his third season ended, Everhart handed in his letter of resignation to Gary Lebo, the school’s athletic director. The letter was one sentence and didn’t mention any reason for his resignation.

Everhart said it was important to do what was “best for the program.”

Everhart, 44, met with his coaching staff Tuesday night and told his players Wednesday afternoon, he said. Everhart, who also serves as the school’s attendance officer, said he will leave the district as soon as possible to make it easier to hire a new coach.

He earned $74,901 this year, including $54,780 as student/staff support liaison, $13,424 for weight lifting and conditioning and $6,697 as head football coach, according to district officials.

MHS Principal Carmela Cotter said the district will begin its search for a new coach immediately. She praised Everhart for being “a fabulous person” and said he worked extensively with the players behind the scenes.

Cotter said she’s confident the football program can return to its glory days and the school can hire a coach who’s “a good fit and can move the team forward.”

Since 1990, the Middies have had eight head football coaches, and in the last 10 seasons, compiled an overall record of 70-46 and 38-32 in the Greater Miami Conference.

Everhart didn’t say what he would do next, only saying there is “always something available in coaching.”

Before coming to Middletown, Everhart served as director of recruiting services at the University of Cincinnati, and he coached for 11 seasons at Winton Woods, compiling an 80-41 record to become the school’s all-time winningest coach. He also took the Warriors to the playoffs in five straight seasons, culminating in a Division II state championship in 2009.

He never enjoyed the same success in Middletown. He finished his three-year run with a 15-17 record, making the playoffs once, his first season, when standout quarterback and future Ohio State player Jalin Marshall was a junior.

Lebo praised Everhart for his commitment to his players and for the way he worked with them. He said Everhart was “a family guy” and he believed in keeping things inside the program.

J.B. Deaton, a 1956 MHS graduate, was extremely close to Everhart as he has been with every Middie football coach the last six decades. Deaton attends every practice, never misses a game. He said Everhart’s offense philosophy wasn’t successful and he refused to go to Plan B.

He said this year’s team got worse the more games it played.

“It was really bad,” Deaton said. “You could see that there wasn’t going to be a turning point.”

Everhart replaced Jason Krause, who, in his three seasons, led the Middies to a 26-7 record, won a Greater Miami Conference championship and earned back-to-back Division I playoff berths. Krause now coaches at Fairfield High School.

About the Author