Atlantic High football coach Chris Bean retires one day after playoff loss
Saturday, November 17, 2012
by Matt Porter
After a trying second stint at Atlantic High, Chris Bean says he has retired from coaching football.
Bean revealed his decision to The Post on Saturday morning, following a disappointing 13-7 loss to Lauderdale Lakes-Boyd Anderson in the Class 7A regional quarterfinals.
However, Bean said he gave his resignation six weeks ago. He informed Atlantic Principal Anthony Lockhart of his plans after the Eagles' 40-0 win over West Boca Raton on Oct. 5.
"It was time for me to move on," said Bean, who said he accepted a position overseeing the athletics programs at Pompey Park in Delray Beach.
He leaves after leading the perpetually talented, sometimes-disappointing Eagles (8-3) to a surprise District 13-7A title. Atlantic began the year 2-2, but scored upset wins over Dwyer and Royal Palm Beach to win the program's first district title since 2008.
Bean, a 45-year-old Delray Beach native, graduated from Atlantic in 1986 and played defensive back at Bethune-Cookman. After several years as an assistant, he became Atlantic's head coach from 2003-05, left to coach in Georgia and returned as an assistant. He was re-hired as head coach in 2010 following the arrest of then-head coach Andre Thaddies, who was later cleared of charges.
Though hungry fans in Delray Beach were critical of him -- Atlantic consistently produces Division I players and has four alums currently playing in the NFL -- Bean's record was strong. He went 41-21 in six seasons, making the playoffs five times. He was 21-11 in the last three years, with two playoff appearances. He was 20-10 as Atlantic's head coach from 2003-05, with three playoff appearances.
When he was re-hired in 2010, Bean said he "wasn't sure how long I was going to stay. I was basically doing a favor for the principal, coming in and getting the program back on track. That was my focal point."
It's unclear who will be Atlantic's next head coach. Lockhart said his immediate focus regarding the program is the college recruitment of the current senior class. He said he would meet in the coming weeks with Athletics Director Kevin Logan to discuss a replacement.
A passionate, philosophical coach, Bean said he hoped he left a good impression on his players.
"You had some ups and some downs, but you hope some young men listened to the message that was given by the coaching staff that was trying to make them better people," Bean said. "For the most part, [they did]."