Hollis Brookline High School head football coach resigns unexpectedly

HOLLIS – Rich Bergskaug, head coach of the Hollis Brookline High School football team, has announced his resignation from the school district, effective at the end of the current school year.

Bergskaug, a special education case manager at HBHS, became head coach in February 2013 after the departure of Milt Robinson. Robinson coached the Cavaliers for 10 years, since the team was first formed in 2003.

In a letter read by Interim Superintendent John Moody at the April 9 meeting of the Hollis Brookline Cooperative School Board, Bergskaug said he was leaving for personal reasons and would fulfill the terms of his contract, which runs through June 30.

“I can assure you I will perform up to the highest standards at this time,” he wrote. “While I believe I am moving on for good reasons, I am sorry to leave and thank you for your support during my time here at the high school, which I have found enjoyable and fulfilling.”

The board voted 6-0-1 to accept his resignation from the coaching and case management positions, with his wife, Gina Bergskaug, abstaining.

A posting on the HBHS Cavaliers Facebook page informed readers that Bergskaug was “keeping the circumstances of his resignation private and hopes we’ll all respect his decision to do so,” adding that he was “deeply sorry for the suddenness of the decision.”

Comments have also been posted on social media speculating that Bergskaug was asked to resign after he was videotaped taking an icy swim in Lake Potanipo as part of the polar plunge dare that has been going on in various communities.

“He resigned of his own accord for his own personal reasons,” said Moody when asked about the allegations. “No one asked him to resign. When you talk about fraternization with students by coaches and club leaders, the lines can become blurred. People shouldn’t make connections between his decision to leave and other things. It was his personal choice.”

Irene Labombarde can be reached at ilabombarde@nashuatelegraph.com.