By Hector Longo
---- — METHUEN — It was the knock on the door that Jim Weymouth dreads.
The Methuen High athletic director got an off-season visit from his boys varsity basketball coach Matt Curran, and immediately knew the news would not be good.
“It’s just a few things that have popped up,” said Curran, who resigned from the position after two seasons (15-27 record). “At Lawrence (he teaches at the Wetherbee School), the school day is longer and I am directing an after-school program there. My daughter is five, and I have her afternoons, and this is not a stage of her life that I want to miss out on.
“Finally, some people don’t know this but I had a kidney transplant in 2004. A few minor things have come up with that, and I have to do all I can to see that they don’t become major.”
Curran leaves the program he once starred in at a time when the Rangers could be very good.
Although it won only four games last year, Methuen saw stars emerging from the current junior class. Players like Jamal Rene, 6-5 Tim Galloway-Burke, Cooper Hammel, Mark Sicard and a handful of others.
“Their commitment to the program and to the game has been amazing,” said Curran. “I couldn’t coach them if I couldn’t make the 100 percent commitment.”
Weymouth opened the search for a successor almost immediately this week, and hopes to have the position filled by the end of September.
“The opportunity to find the right person is definitely there, thanks to Matt, who gave us enough time,” said Weymouth. “Since 1990, this team has been coached by myself or by someone who played for me. So a situation like this makes me a little anxious.”
Curran said his assistants would both be top candidates.
“(ex-Ranger) Tony Curet is in the building, and honestly he did as much of the coaching as any head coach last year,” said Curran. “And (former Everett star) Malik Curry might be the most underrated JV coach in the state. And he had some varsity experience, too.”
There are some accomplished ex-coaches without jobs like Lowell’s Scott Boyle, St. John’s Sean Connolly and Charlestown’s Jack O’Brien.
Methuen competes in the rugged MVC Division 1.