Catalina Foothills boys basketball coach Mark Felix resigned earlier this week and has accepted an offer to coach at Ironwood Ridge, Foothills athletic director Jody Brase said.
I-Ridge athletic director Phil Tilicki said the school will present a candidate for approval at the district board meeting June 4 to replace former coach Brian Peabody but wouldn't confirm who that person is.
All signs point to Felix. He teaches in the Amphitheater school district at Copper Creek Elementary School and was an assistant under Peabody, who left the Nighthawks last month for a second stint at Pima College. Felix has spent the last two years at Foothills.
"If you look at it 10 years from now, he's probably making the right decision," Brase told the Star on Wednesday. "Teaching and coaching in the same district makes a lot of sense. It's definitely a healthier situation, so I'm happy for Coach Felix, but I'm disappointed for our kids because he's only been with us two years, and he's been an asset."
Felix did not return phone calls seeking comment.
The Falcons were the No. 2 seed in the Division II state tournament this season but were upset in the first game. The team returns two of the state's top players: Austin Nehls and Chaz Mack were both named first-team All-Southern Arizona by the Star.
Brase is already searching for a replacement but said she doesn't have a deadline. In the meantime, several assistant coaches will oversee the team.
"If the right candidates are in the pool next week, we'll move faster than slower. But if we don't have a full complement of good applicants, then we might hold another week until we start or finish the process," Brase said. "I've talked to the kids and the parents so everybody knows they've got to step it up a little bit and do business as normal so when the new coach comes on board we'll hit the ground running."
Contact high school sports coordinator Daniel Gaona at firstname.lastname@example.org or 807-7761. On Twitter @DanielGaona13