N-C coaching finalist withdraws

Newton-Conover High School's varsity football coaching search continues after the leading candidate for the job withdrew his name from consideration Sunday.

Mike Byus, varsity football coach at East Lincoln High School, was Newton-Conover's top choice for the Red Devils coaching position that opened when longtime leader Nick Bazzle left for Alexander Central in April.

NCHS leaders said they hoped to reach an agreement with Byus late last week and present the coaching hire to the district school board for its approval Monday night.

However, Byus called NCHS Principal Kevin Campbell at 1:30 p.m. Sunday to say that he could not leave his current position with the Mustangs and withdrew his name from consideration. Campbell said a Hickory Daily Record article last week was the reason Byus will not coach at Newton-Conover.

On Monday morning, Newton-Conover started discussions with a new candidate who was not among a field of 25 who originally applied for the position, Campbell said.

Campbell said he did not have an exact timeline for the school's ongoing coaching search.

To read more of this story, pick up the Tuesday edition of Catawba County's community newspaper, The Observer News Enterprise, at newsstands throughout the county.