After boasting the most stable athletic coaching staff in the region, and perhaps in all of Class 5A throughout the state, for the past decade, the exodus of veteran coaches is continuing at Fairview.
The latest loss for the Knights is wrestling coach Jim Lefebvre, who informed athletic director Frank Lee this week of his resignation. Lefebvre spent 10 seasons in charge of Fairview’s program but decided the time was right to pursue possible administrative positions within the Boulder Valley School District.
Lefebvre said he has applied for the soon-to-be vacant athletic director positions at both Fairview and Boulder. Regardless of how that job hunt ensues, Lefebvre believes it simply came time to seek a new challenge.
“Who knew when I started wrestling in 1973, this thing I wasn’t even that good at, that it would become my life’s work?” Lefebvre said. “I want to coach coaches. I loved my time at Fairview, but I want to find a fit somewhere. Hopefully in Boulder Valley.”
Lefebvre began his Colorado coaching career as an assistant at Broomfield in 1988 before serving similar stints at Skyline, Niwot and Boulder. Lefebvre couldn’t pinpoint a particular highlight from his decade tenure at Fairview, instead professing pride over the general atmosphere of camaraderie and dedication he helped develop within the Knights’ program.
“I leave Fairview with a sense of satisfaction,” Lefebvre said. “I never kept track of overall wins and losses. I know we won more than we lost, and we won a lot of tournaments. What I remember is the great relationships I had with the parents and the kids, and the building of community. We built better young men. It’s been a great 10 years. The fastest 10 years of my life.”
Lefebvre’s resignation follows the retirement of venerable Fairview boys soccer coach Stan Jozwiak, who stepped aside this winter after 34 years at the helm. The Knights also lost 10-year volleyball coach Brooke Simmons, and Lee himself already has resigned his post as the Knights’ athletic director, effective at the end of the school year.
While the Knights still feature a wealth of longtime coaches in baseball’s Rick Harig (23 years), football’s Tom McCartney (22) and girls swimming leader Bob Smartt (15), among others, the 2015-16 Fairview athletics program will undoubtedly feature an entirely new look. That look will receive a further facelift depending on Lee’s pending decision on whether he will remain as the Knights’ boys basketball coach, a post he has held for nearly 20 years. Lee said that decision will arrive about a month from now.
“We’ve been really consistent over the years, but the most important thing with all these coaches its that they went out on their terms and did what’s best for them right now,” Lee said. “For me it’s kind of become an hourly thing. I just want to do what’s best for the program.”
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