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With just eight days to go before its first regular season game, Gulf has turned to a familiar face to lead its baseball program.
Darryl Stidham, an assistant with the Buccaneers last season, has been handed the head coaching job according to Gulf athletic director Travis DeWalt.
"He's been with us. He's been working with us," DeWalt said. "Part of our decision process was the commitment to the program he's shown during this transition period."
Gulf was left without a coach when Shaun Wiemer stepped down. Wiemer, a physical education teacher at Gulf, was accused of choking one of his students in late November, but law enforcement officials did not press charges against Wiemer. He was allowed to return to teaching at Gulf on Jan. 25. Wiemer resigned from his position as head baseball coach prior to the investigation to spend more time with his family according to Gulf assistant principal Doug Elias.
Stidham served as an interim coach, conducting workouts with the team and preparing them for the upcoming season.
"He's been subbing here full time just to be a part of the program," DeWalt said. "He's been working his butt off before and after school to help us through this."
DeWalt said that the school interviewed seven candidates but Stidham was the clear choice.
"He's been the face of Gulf baseball (since Wiemer resigned)," DeWalt said.
Stidham did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment.