After injecting a high level of intensity into the Bellefontaine High School wrestling program for the last five years, Rick Reed has decided to end his run as the head coach.
He informed his wrestlers of his decision Wednesday.
“It was a very difficult decision,” said Reed, who also serves as an assistant football coach for the Chiefs. “I put a lot of thought into it. It is hard to walk away from something that we have invested so much time and effort into. The relationships we have built together made it an extremely tough decision.”
In the end, though, Reed said it was a choice he needed to make to accommodate his changing personal and professional lives.
“When I decided to get back into coaching football, I was involved in the process of helping get Toby Smith here (as the head coach),” said Reed. “At that time, I made a long-term commitment to him.
“I knew that coaching two sports would be difficult. I have taken on more responsibility with the football team, and I recently found out that my wife and I are having our first child. There is a certain way I like to do things and that involves putting in a lot of time in the off-season. With the way things have changed for me, I did not feel like I could give the amount of off-season time to both sports that I need to give.”
Reed brought an intense approach to Chieftain wrestling. He challenged his wrestlers to improve themselves both physically and mentally.
On the mat, the Chiefs enjoyed some memorable moments under Reed.
“Winning the (West Liberty-Salem) Tiger Invitational during my first year is something that will always be special to me,” said Reed. “Going to a tournament at my alma mater with a team that had not enjoyed a lot of recent success and winning it was a great thrill for our kids.”
The most successful season for Reed was the 2011-12 campaign.
“Three years ago, we had a pretty special season,” he said. “We had a team that finished high at the league meet and at sectionals. We qualified six kids to the district tournament and one to state. We were all proud of what we accomplished that season.
“Winning the (Benjamin Logan) Raider Invitational was big for our kids and getting some dual wins over Indian Lake and Ben Logan were important to our kids as well.”
Another highlight for Reed was being able to coach in three state tournaments with standout Johnny Maurice, who finished his career as Bellefontaine’s only four-time state qualifier.
Read complete story in Thursday's Examiner.
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