After a successful season that included a trip to the PIAA Class 4A state championship football game, Mark Schmidt has stepped down as Imhotep Charter's head football coach.

"I knew when I took over the job that it would be a year-to-year type of situation," he said. "With a new administration, I think Imhotep wanted to know it was going to have the same coach in place for at least four to five years."

Schmidt informed the Imhotep players of his decision Tuesday afternoon. "I tried to keep it upbeat and positive," he said of the meeting.

Last season, the Panthers went 13-1 and reached the state final before losing to District 10's Erie Cathedral Prep, 27-20, at HersheyPark Stadium. The previous year, as a first-year assistant under then head coach Albie Crosby, Schmidt helped Imhotep go 15-0 and claim the PIAA Class 3A state title with a 40-3 romp over Erie Cathedral Prep.

Before coming to Imhotep, Schmidt directed Neshaminy to a 161-66 record (.709 winning percentage) in 19 seasons and was an assistant at La Salle High for a year. In 2001, he guided Neshaminy to a 15-0 mark and the Class 4A state crown. "I've been pretty lucky," Schmidt said. "I've been able to be a coach at three of the top football programs in the state."

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