Jeff Lingenfelter can no longer quite recall what exactly prompted him to become the athletic director at Claysburg-Kimmel High School 13 years ago.
"I don't think I did it for the money,'' Lingenfelter cracked dryly. "If I did, it was a poor choice.''
Now 61 and a year away from retiring as a health and physical education teacher at the school where he also had a lengthy and successful run as football coach, Lingenfelter has given up his part-time post as the Bulldogs' AD.
Lingenfelter technically stepped down at the end of the school year, although he'll continue to help out while his successor learns the ropes.
"It just occupied an awful lot of my time, and my time is more important to me now than the job is,'' Lingenfelter said. "Plus, I figured it would be a good way to transition. Whoever is hired to replace me, I'll be there to help out in any way I can.
"If you looked at when I began coaching until now, for 30 years I haven't been able to come home at the end of the day like normal people do. Thirty years is probably enough. I just don't need to do it anymore, and I need the time more for myself and my family.''
Lingenfelter and his wife, Clydene, have been married since 1974.
Mark Mitchell has been the high school principal working with Lingenfelter the past four years.
"We're disappointed just in the fact that Jeff won't be our athletic director anymore,'' Mitchell said. "We knew he was coming to the end of his career anyway. We just weren't sure exactly when. He's going to continue to teach for at least one more year, and I think he just wanted to concentrate on his teaching that last year without the strains of athletic director.''
The school began to advertise the position over the weekend, and Mitchell is hoping to have a successor in place very quickly.
Although Lingenfelter guided the Bulldog football program during one of the most prosperous times in its history, winning nearly 100 games, as athletic director he was steward to girls basketball and softball teams that each made lengthy state playoff runs, a wrestling team that perennially is among the strongest in the area and a baseball squad that also have been fairly competitive.
"Being athletic director is different than being a coach. Obviously, I was a coach for a lot longer than I was an athletic director,'' Lingenfelter said. "As athletic director, you have to take care of everybody. That means that your worst record, whatever program that might be, and your best record, they're all treated equal. You want all of them to succeed and have what they need. You try to take care of what everybody needs.''
When Lingenfelter took the reins as AD, he said he looked at it as just another way to be involved and also with a mind to improving his pension upon retirement. He said he intends to help out however he can until a new athletic director is hired and beyond.
"I'll do what I can to transition in somebody else,'' Lingenfelter said.