By Rob Kiser
Brian Gillespie resigned Thursday as Piqua varsity girls basketball coach.
Gillespie coached the Indians for four years and had a record of 20-72.
He made the following statement on his facebook page.
“Today, I share some rather surprising news. I have decided not to return as Piqua Head Girls Basketball Coach. It was my decision and mine alone. I would like to thank all those who supported me in my time as Piqua coach.
“This decision will allow me to exhale and embrace my role as father and husband even more. And perhaps even coach my boys sometime soon.”
Piqua athletic director Chip Hare was disappointed with the news, because he knew how much the program meant to Gillespie.
“I am disappointed for him,” Hare said. “I know he put his heart and soul into the program. There wasn’t a day he didn’t put everything he had into the program and look for ways to make it better.”
At the same time, Hare understood the decision.
“When you are putting your heart and soul into something, it can be difficult when you have a young family,” Hare said. “I know it is easy to be torn with the time commitment.”
Hare also verified it was Gillespie’s decision alone.
“I just want to be clear that he had the complete support of the administration,” Hare said. “We appreciate all the work he did and the positive impact he had on so many young girls lives.”
Hare hopes to have a coach in place as soon as possible.
“We hope to hire someone by the beginning of summer, so we can put together a schedule for the summer,” Hare said. “We posted the job internally today, so we will see if anyone internally is interested and go from there.”
Hare has an idea what he is looking for in a coaching candidate.
“Of course, we want someone who knows basketball,” Hare said. “But, beyond that, we are looking for someone who wants to build a program, not just a team.”
Hare said there is nothing written in stone just yet for the summer.
“We don’t have anything specific,” he said. “I would hope all the kids would play in a summer league and we would be able to go to a summer camp — and hopefully more.”
Hare said his main thought is with Gillespie.
“We just want to wish him well,” Hare said. “Hopefully, he will be a coach again in the not to distant future. Because I know he is good for the game and good for the kids (he coaches).”
Which Hare witnessed time and again over the last four years.
Rob Kiser is Sports Editor for the Daily Call. He can be reached at (937) 451-3334.