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Rantoul Township High School is turning to a familiar face to help it get through another unusual transition period in its athletic department.
RTHS Superintendent Scott Amerio said Friday morning the school will have Allen Jones Sr. serve as interim athletic director for the second semester of the school year.
Jones filled the interim role last year during the second semester once former athletic director Sally Bryan retired after the first semester and after the school board could not agree on a full-time replacement for her before she retired.
The scenario this year is different.
Former RTHS athletic director and head football coach Joe Bendoraitis resigned on Dec. 12 for "family and personal reasons," after Bendoraitis was hired in mid-May.
Amerio, RTHS Principal Todd Wilson and several RTHS coaches contacted immediately after Bendoraitis' resignation declined comment on any specifics about his abrupt resignation, and several messages left on Bendoraitis' cell phone were not returned.
Amerio said he will present a plan to the school board at its Jan. 14 meeting about the athletic director position, with hopes of filling the position fulltime for the 2013-14 school year.
Amerio said Jones will serve as interim athletic director the rest of the school year, and whoever the new athletic director is will start on July 1.
Amerio said Jones can start work now as the interim athletic director, and the board will officially approve the move at the January meeting.
"To not have to come up with a more permanent solution right now and the whole process of trying to find somebody mid-year is nice," Amerio said. "I'm hoping that this will give us the opportunity to create a position that is stable and get somebody in there that is going to provide us that consistency we need."
Jones said he had a brief conversation with Amerio on Friday morning to see if Jones would be interested in filling the role on an interim basis again, and Jones said he would be.
"I'm looking forward to it," Jones said. "I had a lot of fun last time, and I think we can get through the end of the year and let the board decide which way it wants to go."
For more on this story, please pick up the Dec. 26 edition of the Rantoul Press.