Former coach cites “a difference of opinion” regarding his teaching position
Charlestown girls basketball coach Michael Prichard resigned Wednesday, citing “a difference of opinion” regarding his teaching position.
Prichard said he opted to step down because he didn’t feel he was viewed as “a priority” within the school system. A 1997 graduate of Charlestown, Prichard was teaching on the middle school level and said he was often “overlooked” for high school positions.
“It was not an easy decision. … I kind of started to see a shift in some of the relationships between myself and the higher-ups in the school,” said Prichard, who was told by his peers to look for other jobs prior to his resignation.
“I’m pretty strong to sticking what I believe in. I believe that’s what I did. It’s not the way I wanted to do it, but I kind of saw some writing on the wall.”
A three-year head coach, Prichard posted a 47-24 record with the Pirates. His 47 wins rank third all-time in program history behind Tony Hall (183) and Rhonda Smith (138), and his career win percentage (66 percent) ranks second. He’s the only coach in school history without a losing season.
Prichard accepted the girls coaching job in September of 2013, taking over for Scott Matthews, who resigned before coaching a game. Prichard said he’s helped coach at Charlestown since 2002, including a role as head coach of the freshman boys basketball team from 2005-08 before he sprung for an assistant job at Spalding University in Louisville during the 2008-09 season.
The Pirates went 13-11 last season and fell to North Harrison 64-39 in the sectional semifinals. Prichard led the Pirates to a 15-8 mark and a trip to the sectional championship in his first year before pacing the team to a 19-5 record in his second season at the helm.
Prichard said many of his players, some “very upset,” have reached out to him since his resignation was made official.
“We raised up the expectations at Charlestown, and the kids put in the time to do it,” Prichard said of his former players. “Any success that we had was really a tribute to them being willing to do the things that we asked as a coaching staff.”
Despite some recent success, the Pirates are six years removed from their last sectional title. The program’s storied resume includes a semi-state crown in 1993, four regional championships — 2005 its most recent — and 10 sectional titles.
As for Prichard, he said Wednesday that he’s already been contacted by some inquiring coaches with staff vacancies.
“We’ll see what God has planned for me,” Prichard said.