Coach Receives Death Threats

November 1, 2017

At Middletown (Ohio) High School, T. Lance Engelka has resigned from his position as Head Football Coach. According to, Engelka cited threats against him, his staff, and his family in his resignation letter, as well as verbal abuse.

He said that because of a “misguided community perspective,” certain parents placed too much importance on winning games, overestimated their children's potential, and considered bullying an acceptable way of dealing with coaches.

"The online death threats, threats of physical violence, personal and deceitful attacks from parents and community members, and verbal abuse leveled against myself, my family and my coaching staff have devolved into an unsafe environment which I refuse to tolerate," Engelka wrote in his letter.

Aaron Zupka, Middletown's athletic director, said Engelka's departure was “his own decision,” and the school had not fired him. Engelka had a record of 1-19 in his two seasons as Head Coach.

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Throughout the course of a season, a team will often go through a number of stages before, hopefully, fully meshing into a strong, high-performing unit. In order to help guide your team to this ultimate goal, it’s important to know how to recognize the different stages of development.
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