November 08, 2017 10:01 PM
(ABC 6 News) – After 11 years and two state football tournament appearances, Stewartville Tigers head football coach Aaron Meyer has decided to step down.
Meyer, who went 67-41 in 11 seasons at Stewartville, told ABC 6 News he stepped down Wednesday due to “family” reasons—Meyer and his wife are expecting their third child in February.
“It’s tough,” Meyer said. “I don’t think people understand the day-in and day-out job it is. It wears on you and it gets really hard as the years go on.”
The Tigers, the no.3 seed in the Section 1AAA playoffs, lost at home versus no.6 seed P-E-M in the section quarterfinals, 28-22, marking the end of the season—and ultimately, Meyer’s final game in charge.
Despite the early finish to the season, Meyer said going into the 2017 season, he “knew” this would be his final year, but he chose to keep it to himself.
On Wednesday morning, Meyer told his players about his decision to step down (Meyer also said he told his assistant coaches on Tuesday night about his decision to resign).
“I wanted to make this year about the team and not myself,” Meyer said. “It was hard. I don’t want to make anyone feel I let them down. That’s the thing I struggle with, that this is a personal and selfish decision. For the last 11 years, I’ve been preaching ‘do what’s best for the team,’ and then I make a selfish decision, so I did struggle with that for a little bit. I do hope they understand that it’s a decision I put a lot of thought into, and not just a rash decision.”
Stewartville Activities Director Tim Malone said Meyer handed in his resignation letter on Friday, Nov. 3, but per Meyer's request, he wanted to keep it private until addressing his players.
"It felt like I got kicked in the stomach," Malone said. "He's such a great champion for kids. He never gets too high, never gets too low, we'll definitely miss him as a football coach."
Meyer said he’s given his opinion regarding who should fill his spot as the school’s head football coach, but said he’s “leaving the decision up to (Malone).”
Malone added he believes there are "plenty of qualified candidates" within the program, but they'll explore "all options," and hope to have the position filled before Christmas.
Meyer said whoever takes over, it's "their" program, not his.
“It can’t be ‘Coach Meyer’s’ program that someone is in charge of,” Meyer said. “It has to take a new course. I hope a lot of the things we do stay the same thing, but at the same time, there needs to be new ownership by the new head coach.”
Meyer also added he’d be open to returning as a volunteer or assistant coach, but as of now, he’ll continue to teach speech at Stewartville and coach track and field during the spring.
Meyer's resignation letter is expected to be accepted no later than Monday.
Updated: November 08, 2017 10:01 PM
Created: November 08, 2017 04:46 PM
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