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Rick Wimmer reinstated as Fishers football coach

Fishers High School football head coach Rick Wimmer at practice Wednesday November 7, 2012. Joe Vitti / The Star

Fishers High School football head coach Rick Wimmer at practice Wednesday November 7, 2012. Joe Vitti / The Star

Rick Wimmer will return to his position as football coach at Fishers High School on Monday.

Wimmer has been on paid administrative leave since last week stemming from an in-class incident with a student on Sept. 13. He did not coach in last week’s 14-10 loss to Brownsburg and will not coach tonight’s game at Avon.

“I’m very happy and eager to get started again,” Wimmer said. “I’m interested in how we do tonight and I’m glad the process is over. I’m thankful that I got a fair solution.”

Wimmer, a veteran coach in his 34th season overall, was placed on administrative leave after an incident that began when a student arrived late for class. According to an incident report from the Fishers police department, Wimmer instructed the student to move to the back of the class and the student “verbally disagreed and refused to move.”

“In an attempt to direct the student to the back of the room, the teacher placed his hands on the student’s shoulder and upper chest,” according to the report. “The student immediately reacted and the teacher removed his hands. Both parties estimated the entire incident lasted approximately five seconds.”

The police department determined no further investigation was necessary. The student’s family, however, is expected to pursue further action. The student involved was a member of the football team.

A statement from the school district read: “The school district has concluded a thorough evaluation and has addressed the incident. The district appreciates the cooperation of all involved throughout the process and will have no further comment in order to protect confidentiality.”

Wimmer, in his 11th season at Fishers, led the Tigers to the Class 5A state championship. He is 243-124 overall, including stops at Zionsville, Merrillville and Greenwood.

Wimmer was asked if there was anything he planned to change about his teaching or coaching philosophy.

“Obviously there are things they (the school district) have concerns about and I’m eager to address those things,” he said. “But I’m always going to try to do my best to teach kids and do what I think is important.”

Michael Kelly, the offensive coordinator, has been in charge in Wimmer’s absence. The Tigers were 2-3 going into Friday night’s game.

“It’s been difficult being out, but our staff has done a tremendous job,” he said. “They’ve been very capable of in how they have handled everything with our team.”

Call IndyStar reporter Kyle Neddenriep at (317) 444-6649.

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