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Witmer steps down as Broncos' hoops coach

Brookwood's athletic department hasn't been required to do many boys basketball coaching searches, but one will be necessary this offseason.

Craig Witmer informed his team Monday that he had stepped down as head coach at his alma mater to spend more time with his family. He and his wife Amy have two young daughters, Hayden (6) and Blake (4).

"That's the big thing is spending more time with (my daughters)," said Witmer, who teaches AP macroeconomics and is a local school technology coordinator, or Web site manager, for Brookwood. "It's a long season and there's really not an offseason. I really just wanted to spend more time at home."

The 1992 Brookwood grad had coached at the school for 10 seasons, the past eight as head coach after he replaced his mentor and former coach, Eddie Martin, in 2001. Martin coached Brookwood's boys from when the high school opened in 1981 until 2001.

Witmer's final Bronco team made the state tournament despite a very young playing rotation, but went 19-10 and finished as the Region 8-AAAAA Tournament runner-up. It was the team's first region title game appearance since 1996. Brookwood also won the Deep South Classic in December.

The Broncos made the state tournament four times under Witmer, reaching the Class AAAAA Sweet 16 in 2004. He won 108 games in his eight seasons.

Witmer didn't know any long-term plans for his future, although he plans to teach at Brookwood in 2009-10 without any coaching duties.

"It's going to be tough for me to be away from (basketball)," Witmer said. "It's going to be a big adjustment period. My wife's already worried about me. But I'm looking forward to Thanksgiving break and Christmas break and actually having a break. That will be a nice adjustment."