Mechanicsburg’s second football coaching search in as many years could be over in just two months.
Pending school board approval Tuesday night, Anthony Rose is set to be named the Wildcats new coach, replacing Billy Furman after just one season.
The news was first reported by ABC27.
“We are sending Anthony Rose as our recommended candidate to the school board,” Mechanicsburg athletic director Seth Pehanich said Friday.
Pehanich would not say more about the hiring process and Rose until the school board approved the move. He said he officially presented Rose’s name for school board approval Friday.
"To be a varsity head coach has always been my dream," Rose said when reached Saturday evening. "My goal is to serve as role model for these guys. I had so much fun coaching the freshmen this year and getting back into it. Such a great group of kids."
Rose grew up in Maiden, North Carolina, about an hour north-west of Charlotte, and went to Maiden High School. He then spent a few years teaching social studies and coaching the varsity girls basketball team at Chambersburg High School.
He has lived in Mechanicsburg for nine years with his wife, Rebecca, and two children, and began teaching social studies at the high school this year. He is also the ninth grade girls basketball coach under longtime varsity coach Clay McAllister, a role Rose said he will stay in through the season while balancing offseason football weight training and preparation.
Rose coached the ninth grade football team this fall to an 8-1 record, the first time Mechanicsburg fielded a ninth grade team since 2013. Low participation numbers were cited at the time when the team was dropped, but Pehanich and then-varsity coach Furman successful lobbied the school board to reinstate the squad.
Rose replaces Furman, who coached just one season and helped guide the Wildcats to a 3-7 campaign after consecutive seasons without a win.
Mechanicsburg opened up the position shortly after the season concluded. Pehanich said it was a “personnel matter” and couldn’t comment further, while Furman was more vocal.
“I was told that my standards and expectations for the football team did not align with the standards and expectations of the school,” Furman said in November.
"I’ll be honest, I don’t think there’s any hesitation on my part," Rose said when asked if he had any concern about coming into a situation after a coach left unceremoniously. "I’m ready to hit the ground running now."
Furman, a former assistant coach at Temple and the University of Miami, replaced former coach Chris Hakel after a pair of 0-10 seasons. It was a five-month search.
Furman guided the team to a 2-1 start with wins over Spring Grove and Northern to jump-start a program that had previously struggled with motivation.
There is still one other coaching position open in The Sentinel area. Red Land’s Chad Weaver stepped down within weeks of the season’s conclusion.
For more information on Rose's hiring, go to cumberlink.com Tuesday night.
This story has been updated twice, first with comment from Seth Pehanich on Friday and again with comment and clarifications from Anthony Rose.
A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that Mechanicsburg's ninth grade football team was unbeaten in 2017. It went 8-1, Rose later clarified.