UPDATED: Houpt resigns after seven years leading Danville hoops

UPDATED: Houpt resigns after seven years leading Danville hoops

DANVILLE — Ted Houpt didn’t think he’d coach the Danville boys’ basketball team for seven seasons.

Posting a 35-73 record in his first four years, however, ensured a lengthier reign.

“After a slow start to the career, you get competitive,” Houpt said. “You don’t want to go out like this. You want to make sure you can leave with a little dignity.”

Houpt wound up doing plenty more than that.

The longtime Danville High history teacher resigned Monday as the Vikings’ hoops boss, on the back of the club establishing its best-ever win total.

After the aforementioned rough beginning of his tenure, Houpt guided Danville to a 79-16 ledger in the next three seasons.

That included a school-record 31 triumphs in 2018-19, a pair of Class 4A regional championships and the Vikings’ first outright Big 12 Conference crown since 2001, coming in 2017-18.

“Just the opportunity to pass the program off to somebody while it’s in a good place (is big),” Houpt said. “Give somebody a chance to get off to a good start and not leave the cupboard too bare.”

Houpt’s son, Sean, is Danville’s lone graduating starter heading into 2019-2020. Among those set to return is Division I prospect Tevin Smith.

Sean’s impending departure for college was another reason Ted Houpt gave for wanting to step aside at this time, adding he likely has just “a couple years” left in the classroom.

Houpt’s daughter, Erin, also is a rising junior on the Vikings girls’ basketball team.

“(Coaching is) a demanding job,” Houpt said. “Whether you’re losing or winning ... it takes a lot of energy, a lot of your focus.”

Whoever replaces Houpt will be just the fourth Danville boys’ leader this century, following Scott Olson and Gary Tidwell as well.

The newcomer also will be filling the shoes of the most successful of those three coaches at Danville.

“We had some great players and great kids come along to allow that to be a possibility,” Houpt said. “I look forward to being able to go to the games and cheer them and not have to be sick to my stomach worrying (about results).”

Vikings athletic director Mark Bacys said the position will be posted right away.

Houpt figures it will attract a strong pool of candidates, thanks to recent outcomes and a strong core of underclassmen.

“It should be a pretty attractive job,” Houpt said. “(The kids) came into the gym with the right attitude. I was very fortunate to have that, and I will definitely miss that.”

* * *

DANVILLE — The Danville boys' basketball program is seeking a new coach after Ted Houpt announced his resignation Monday.

Houpt recently finished his seventh year in charge of the Vikings, overseeing some of their best results since the 1990s. His tenure concludes with a 114-89 record, including a 79-16 ledger in the last three campaigns.

The longtime Danville history teacher guided the Vikings to a Class 4A regional championship in 2017, the club's first since winning one in Class AA in 2001. The following year, he oversaw Danville's first Big 12 Conference outright title victory since 2001, and the Vikings followed that up this season by sharing the Big 12 crown with Normal West.

Houpt's son, Sean, was the lone senior starter on this year's Danville roster. Houpt departs a crew that finished one win shy of a sectional championship and returns four starters, including Division I prospect Tevin Smith. Ted Houpt's daughter, Erin, will be a junior on the Vikings girls' team next season.

Danville athletic director Mark Bacys said the job will be posted publicly.