Moffat County boys basketball coach to resign

Steve Maneotis, who led team to 31-40 overall record in more than 3 seasons, said it’s for team’s best interest



Steve Maneotis

Steve Maneotis, Moffat County High School boys varsity basketball coach, has announced he will resign at the end of the season.

The coach turned in his resignation Friday, before his team lost, 69-58, to Delta at home.

Maneotis said resigning was in the best interest of the team.

“After a review with (princi­pal) Thom Sch­nellinger and Mr. (Richard) Wildenhaus, our conclusion was that I would offer my resignation for the best interest of the boys on the team,” Maneotis said Monday afternoon. “It’s through no fault of mine, or anyone else.

“There were no discrepancies, it was just my conclusion that this would be the best thing to do.”

Maneotis, who has been head coach since the 2007-08 season and was an assistant coach 10 years before becoming head coach, has guided the Bulldogs to a 31-40 overall record, including a 4-15 mark this year.

The team is coming off its best game of the year, a 72-52 Saturday win at home against Palisade High School to snap an eight-game Western Slope League losing streak.

The high school’s athletic director, Wildenhaus, said a search for a new coach would begin after the season.

Maneotis will coach until the end of the season.

“All year, I’ve told the guys they should never quit, never give up,” Maneotis said. “That showed in how well they played Saturday against Palisade. It would be contradictory for me if I didn’t finish the rest of the year.”

Wildenhaus said the high school hopes to have a new coach before summer break.

“We want to have someone in place before the end of school so they can begin to develop a program,” he said.

The new coach could be an internal candidate, Wildenhaus said, adding that applicants for open school positions also will be informed of the vacancy.

Wildenhaus said the decision to keep any assistant coaches would be left to the new head coach.

When Maneotis does leave, he will have only good memories from his 13 years as a coach at Moffat County High School, he said.

“I’m proud of everything I was able to accomplish as a coach,” he said. “I’m proud of my team. I’m proud of my assistant coaches — Joe Padon and Justin Gallegos have done an outstanding job.

“I would like to thank all the kids who are playing today, and all of the players who have been a part of my 13 years as a coach. I thank the administration for letting me do what I have done.”

Whoever inherits the program will get a team with an upside, Maneotis said.

“I think this is a healthy program, and we have guys who play the game the right way,” he said. “The kids love and understand the game of basketball.”

Maneotis said he was happy to coach because of the chance it gave him to interact with students.

“I hold every coach at Moffat County in the highest regard,” he said. “Every coach there does a great job of helping the kids. And really, that’s what it is all about.

“I will always hold the memories of my time at Moffat County close to my heart.”

Junior Dylon Camilletti has played for Maneotis during his three-year varsity basketball career. Having to adjust to a new system will be a struggle at first, the starting guard said.

“It will be hard for us upperclassmen,” he said. “We’ve been with him for a few years, we know his system. It will take a while to get to know the new system.”

Camilletti said the team’s returning five juniors, three sophomores and lone freshman on the varsity squad will need to make adjustments next year.

“It will be a change, for sure,” he said. “But you always go through different coaches from middle school to AAU. You have to get used to the new coach.”

The rest of the year, Camilletti said the team plans on doing what it did Saturday night.

“I don’t think it’s going to change anything,” he said. “We’re just going to keep doing what we’ve been doing. Keep playing hard.

“We have four more games, and we want to win those.”


upsetincraig 7 years, 2 months ago

As long as the parents dictate how the program will be run, there will be turnover. How about the parents allowing their children to fight their own battles so when they are faced with something IMPORTANT they can deal with it. Anyone who knows basketball knows there is a lack of talent on this team. How many of these kids put in the time over the summer, because face it, that's what it takes now to be competetive. You can coach my son anytime Steve. Good luck!


phishybob9 7 years, 2 months ago

I agree that parents and politics have sabotaged the Moffat County boys basketball program for years. Another core issue for the failures of the program is the lack of a quality youth program. These kids are not learning the proper fundamentals of the game at an early age. They are falling behind the curve and it has been reflected in the performance of the basketball program. Until these issues are addressed then the program will be destined to fail.


Vermillion 7 years, 2 months ago

Lgmillerni raises a good point about the purpose of high school athletics. When I played football and basketball in middle school and high school, I never thought that practice was fun. The purpose of practice was to make me a better player through hard work and good teaching techniques by the coaches. When all the players practice hard during the season and the offseason, the team becomes better. You develop good relationship between your teammates and respect the time and effort the coaches put into the program. The fun part of sports is when you play well and maybe win some games against other teams who have also worked hard to become better. What I find distressing is that players and their parents believe that if the child lays on the couch watching football and basketball and playing video games they will somehow become a good athlete. If that doesn’t happen, then it has to be someone else’s fault, namely, the coach. The parents and the players want all the glory, but are not willing to pay the price on getting better. If you want your child just to have fun, then they should participate in pickup games, inter-murals or town team ball.


maverick 7 years, 2 months ago

I wanted to say a big "thank you" to Steve for the time he spent with my son when we lived in Craig. We remember the great times and the good people in Craig and my son Brian will always have just the absolute best memories about his buddies up there! We miss everyone very much! Thanks not only to Steve but to Coach Jeff Knoche for the unseen time, energy, and knowledge he brings and brought to the game of basketball. Selfless giving on the part of both of these guys! Best wishes, Steve! Don


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