Lake Zurich's Proffitt hopes resignation brings closure
Mired in controversy surrounding his program and on administrative leave for more than two months, David Proffitt resigned as Lake Zurich's football head coach Thursday afternoon.
"I didn't want the situation to continue to linger," Proffitt said. "People have to get on with their lives."
That includes Proffitt, who's been Lake Zurich's head coach since 2012. He and assistant coach Chad Beaver were put on paid administrative leave on Nov. 4, one day before for the Bears' Class 7A second-round state playoff game against Fenwick. An investigation into Lake Zurich's program indicated inappropriate behavior in the football locker room occurred about a week before the game. Emails obtained from Lake Zurich District 95 referred to the activity as hazing.
While Lake Zurich's school board accepted Beaver's resignation Thursday night, Proffitt's resignation will be formally accepted at the next school board meeting.
"I feel (resigning) is the best thing to do under the circumstances," Proffitt said. "There needs to be some closure for the kids. They haven't had that."
The highly respected Proffitt took no parting shots.
"I'm disappointed," he said. "The people at Lake Zurich are good people. The coaches are great. The kids are outstanding."
"Coach Proffitt is beloved by many in the football program and at the high school," Lake Zurich principal Kent Nightlinger said in a statement obtained by the Daily Herald. "We appreciate his service to the district, and we wish him all the best in the future."
While he's 70 years old, Proffitt hopes to land a coaching position elsewhere. He spent six seasons as Lake Zurich head coach Bryan Stortz's defensive coordinator, before replacing Stortz, who left to Rock Island. Proffitt served as Marian Central's head coach from 1991-2002, winning 81 games in 12 seasons. He also was the head coach at Weber early in his career.
"I'm not ready to retire," Proffit said. "I feel I still have something to give to the sport and young people."
Lake Zurich went 39-18 in Proffitt's five seasons, reaching the state semifinals in 2012 and then losing to Mt. Carmel in the 2013 Class 7A state championship game.