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Mt. Hebron hires Mike McCarthy as head varsity football coach

Mt. Hebron hires Mike McCarthy as head varsity football coach
Mt.Hebron head coach Mike McCarthy, seen here talking to his varsity lacrosseteamduring a game in 2015, has been hired as head varsity football coach at the school. (File photo by Steve Ruark)

Mike McCarthy has been hired as the next head varsity football coach at Mt. Hebron High School.

McCarthy, who played football and lacrosse at the school before graduating in 1996, has been the Vikings' varsity lacrosse coach since 2006 and on the JV football coaching staff for eight years, including the last four as head coach. He replaces Phil Zacharias, who was let go at the end of last season after compiling a 16-35 record in five years.

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"It's exciting because it's a new challenge. It's exciting because I think we have great kids in the school and a ton of athletes in the school," said McCarthy, who has taught business classes and physical education at Mt. Hebron since 2009. "We have support from the administration moving forward and it's exciting to try to build the foundation of the program and be competitive year in and year out."

McCarthy led the lacrosse team to the 3A/2A state championship game last spring and finished with a 13-6 record. The football team hasn't had a winning season or qualified for the playoffs since 2012, when it went 6-4 in the regular season but lost to River Hill in the regional semifinals. The Vikings have won three games in the last two years.

McCarthy said he is "close" to filling out his coaching staff but will mold his offensive and defensive schemes around the athletes on the field.

"I think because of our history in terms of wins and losses there hasn't been enough commitment. Football is a grind and we have multi-talented kids," he said. "My hope is that we can inspire them with creating a fun, hardworking, competitive program that they're going to know that the coaching staff is there for them. We want to create a sense of brotherhood and family."

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