Curtis steps down as Port Angeles High School football coach

Coach Bret Curtis

Coach Bret Curtis

PORT ANGELES — Bret Curtis has resigned as head football coach of the Port Angeles Roughriders, district athletic director Dwayne Johnson confirmed.

Curtis’ resignation was approved at a December meeting of the Port Angeles School Board.

Johnson declined to address the reasons behind Curtis’ resignation, instead directing all questions to the former coach.

Reached Saturday, Curtis said he had stepped down from the position.

“I’m going to be completely honest with you and tell you that there were some issues and the decision was made to have me step down,” Curtis said.

“There were some decisions that were made and this was the best thing to do for everyone involved,” he said.

Curtis acknowledged an incident that allegedly occurred between two senior Port Angeles football players and a male team manager before a road game against North Mason played a role in his decision to leave the program.

“Yeah, and that’s about as far as I’ll go with that,” Curtis said.

Court documents reveal the team manager filed a temporary protection order against the two players in October. The players were removed from the football team for the remainder of the season and prohibited from turning out for other Port Angeles sports teams for the rest of their time as students.

“Things happened and that’s about as far as I’ll go into it,” Curtis said.

A search of Washington court records shows that no felony charges have been filed against the two students.

Curtis said he otherwise enjoyed the experience as head coach of the football team from 2015-17.

His teams complied a record of 2-16 in Olympic League 2A Division play, 4-23 overall.

Port Angeles struggled in his first two seasons, winning just one game with a vastly inexperienced roster, but the 2017 team showed improvement and had appeared to turn the corner, snapping a 17-game losing streak and posting a record of 3-6 overall.

“I appreciated the opportunity, appreciated working with the boys and working with the staff we had and I wish them nothing but the best going forward.

“I was happy to have coached the team for the three seasons that I was there and I really feel we made some progress. It’s special when you get a chance to work with young men and use the great game of football to teach lessons that will help them in their lives. I’m speaking for myself, but it was a privilege to work with the kids we had beginning when they were freshman and sophomores and see the growth they made through hard work and perseverance begin to pay off.”

Johnson said a “nationwide search” for Curtis’ successor is underway. The head coach position, along with two assistant coach positions, is posted on the Port Angeles School District website at https://portangelesjobs.hrmplus.net/JobOpenings.aspx.

When asked if he had any advice for the next head coach, Curtis kept the interests of student-athletes at heart.

“Treat our boys right, that’s the main thing,” Curtis said. “That’s ultimately what we decided to do. Be good examples for the boys. And teach them those things about character that make a person successful. Instill a work ethic that will help them as they get older.”

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Sports reporter/columnist Michael Carman can be contacted at 360-417-3525 or mcarman@peninsuladailynews.com.

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