Joe Schartz will continue coaching Manhattan High’s football program and teaching physical education, USD 383 superintendent Marvin Wade announced Wednesday morning.
Wade has spent the past three weeks weighing whether to retain Schartz after the Manhattan-Ogden school board declined to take action on the matter at a Dec. 20 meeting. The board instead directed Wade to rule on Schartz, whose employment status came under scrutiny following a team hazing incident in October that became known as the “birthday beatdown.”
Wade declined to elaborate on his decision.
Riley County Attorney Barry Wilkerson announced Dec. 22 that Schartz wouldn’t be charged in the incident, which occurred in the Indians’ team locker room following practice on Oct. 26 and left two sophomore players with injuries. After reviewing the Riley County Police Department’s investigation, Wilkerson said “there is no basis to conclude that Joe Schartz committed the crime of endangering a child.”
Schartz recently completed his ninth season as head coach of the Indians. He ranks second in career wins at Manhattan with a record of 73-19, including an 8-2 mark this past season and a 9-1 mark in 2016.
Schartz played quarterback for Washburn from 1993-96, finishing his career as the Ichabods’ career leader in passing yards (5,527) and total offense (6,622 yards). Both records have since been eclipsed, and Schartz currently ranks fourth in each category. He was inducted into the WU Athletics Hall of Fame in 2015.