Category Archives: Coaches’ Corner

Coaching Carousel

Updated 11/19

Girls

Long County – Sheron Jones-Daniel – Bradwell Institute asst.
Woodstock Jared Hughes – Rome HC
Habersham Central
Bill Bradley
Jackson  Tony Watkins – Franklin County HC
Johnson-Gainesville Duke Mullis – Former Flowery Branch boys HC
North Gwinnett
– Amanda Heil – Asst. on staff
Oconee County
Thad Burgess – Boys HC
Villa Rica
Tammy Norred – Haralson County HC
Morrow
Rachel Henry
Arabia Mountain
– Jerry Jackson – Redan HC
Lumpkin County
 – David Dowse – McIntosh HC
Jackson County – Monte McClure – Asst. at Winder-Barrow
Mt. Vernon Rita Williams – Former Galloway asst.
Jones County
– ChoRhonda Gwaltney  – Glynn Academy HC
Adairsville – Michael Roberson – Adairsville Middle
Baldwin Kizzie Walker – Asst. on staff
Greenbrier –
 Brandon Dotson – Former Laney boys asst.
Glynn Academy  Sharnesha Smith – Bishop Kenny, FL asst.
ELCAGlenn Cassell – Stratford Academy asst.
East Coweta –
 Karen Frady – Former Starr’s Mill coach
Thomas County Central
 – Thomas McAboy – Coffe HC
Mary Persons –
 Lamon McElhaney – Asst. on staff
BrookwoodCarolyn Whitney – Lambert asst.
Winder-Barrow
Kimberly Garren – Asst. on staff
Pickens
Brandon Thomas – Winder-Barrow HC
Pope 
Bill Blythe – Varsity boys asst.
Walton
Matt Kelterborn – Asst. on staff
Mt. Paran
Stephanie Dunn – Berry College HC
Redan
 – Robert Welton – Westside-Macon football RB coach
Haralson County – Levi Wigley – Asst. on staff
Rome
Jason Harris – Henry County HC
Langston Hughes –
Xavier Trice – East Coweta asst.
Hardaway Kelly Ellison – Carver-Columbus asst.
Chattahoochee
Randy Clemons – Creekview asst.
McIntosh – Jessica Carlyle – Former Landmark Christian
Calhoun – Kayla Ralston – Asst. on staff
Coffee
Tasha Kimble – Former Turner County HC
Westminster
Katie Argall – Asst. on staff
Walnut Grove
Byron Farmer – Apalachee boys asst.
Franklin County – John Strickland – Blackman, TN asst.
Macon County – Dr. George McElroy – Manchester boys HC
VidaliaMatt Huddleston – Georgia Metros
Henry County
Greg Shook – Locust Grove HC
Salem –
 Delvin Wilson – Asst. on staff
Spencer – Pamela Smith – South Girard Middle School
Hapeville CharterDeMarcus Acree – Lovejoy asst.
Mill Creek – Trisha Collier/Tania Washington – Assts. on staff
Roswell
 – Antonio Wade – Thomasville HC
Thomasville – Carmenoique Dawson 
Carver-AtlantaThameena Azziz
Locust Grove – Tim Knecht 
Elite ScholarsKevin Davis
Union County – Corey Garrett – Asst. on staff
Bradwell Institute
North MurrayRandy Watson – Dade County HC
Dade CountyRegena Logan – Asst. on staff
New Hampstead – Bob Klofenstine – Former Hephzibah boys HC
Fellowship ChristianTroy Schulz – Asst. on staff
PepperellJeff Rickman
Lincoln County – Michael Williams – Thomson HC
Thomson – Christian Wilder – Asst. on staff
Monroe Area David Radford – Discovery

Boys

Long County – Reggie Wilkes – Adairsville HC
Habersham Central Jeremy York – Mill Creek asst.
Ola – Chris Gardner
Social Circle – Brian Anderson – Cross Creek HC
George Walton Academy – Tommy Yancey – Coastal Georgia asst.
Mt. Vernon Tarrik Mabon – Asst. on staff
Holy Innocents’ – Adrian Collins – 2016-17 Interim HC
Mt. Pisgah – Patrick Johnson – Citrus College HC
Adairsville – Alex Disbrow – Gordon Lee HC
Milton – Allen Whitehart – Etowah HC
Jefferson
 – Kevin Morris – Apalachee HC
Central GwinnettEmmett Rouse – Former Osborne HC
Sandy Creek – Jon-Michael Nickerson – Faulkner University asst.
Thomas County CentralLevi Williams – Former Savannah State AC
Drew Joe Weems
LanierBranden Mayweather – Central Gwinnett HC
West Laurens
Chuck Hill – Asst. on staff
Armuchee – Clint Decker – Asst. on staff.
Henry CountyBJ Thomas – Monticello HC
Commerce Russ Gregg – Eskrine women’s HC
Spalding Joseph Wilder – Henry County asst.
Lovejoy – Quantavias Allen – Macon County girls HC
Whitefield AcademyCourtney Brooks – Former SACA/Banneker HC
Houston County – Don Hudson – Football coach
Taylor County – Thad Williams – Bacon County asst.
Randolph-Clay – Laberton Sims – Toombs County HC
Tift County Chris Wade – Asst. on staff
ApalacheeSpencer Bernstein – Hillgrove asst.
DarlingtonBradley Pierson – Sewanee HC
Arabia Mountain Norman Brown – Former Providence Christian HC
RomeEric Holland – Tift County HC
Cross Creek – 
Lawrence Kelly – Saluda, SC HC
MonticelloChris Pennamon – Heritage-Conyers asst.
ParkviewJon Collins – Asst. on staff
Chattahoochee Chris Short – Roswell asst.
Troup
Blake Craft – LaGrange asst.
Rockmart
Steve Luke – Softball HC
ManchesterAnzy Hardman – Former Taylor County HC
Jackson – Virgil Amey – Duluth asst.
EtowahJason Dasinger – Alpharetta HC
Oglethorpe County – Matt Allen – Apalachee girls asst.
Lincoln County
Christian Tiller – Thomson asst.
Westside-Augusta
John Gordon – Pine Hill Middle School
Hapeville CharterKeydrick Barlow – Former Hapeville girls coach
KIPP Atlanta Bo Bivens – MoneyballATL
Bleckley CountyRandall Owens – Baldwin girls HC
Toombs County – Ryan Lewis – Statesboro asst.
Alpharetta Eric Blair – Kennesaw Mountain asst.
Walton Bo Abney – Former McEachern asst.
Johnson-Gainesville Tyler Whitlock – West Forsyth asst.
PerryReggie West – Girls HC
ML King – Gregory Boatwright – Asst. of staff
Gordon Lee – Matt Smith
Haralson County 
– Anthony Angle – Asst. on staff
Wheeler – Larry Thompson – Greenforest HC
Our Lady of MercyBill Schmitz – Athletic Director
Woodville-Tompkins – Lenny Williams – Former Brandon Hall HC
Monroe AreaBolling DuBose – Jefferson HC
Greenforest – Rory Griffin – Asst. on staff
Excel Christian – Shannon Boatfield 
Benedictine Bob Williams – Niles West, IL HC
Mt. Zion-Carroll 
– Tyler Wright – Asst. on staff
Southwest Atlanta Christian – Emzie Penny
Worth County 
Drew CharterJames Williams – Norcross Asst.

BREAKING: Milton head coach Matt Kramer resigns mid-season

Multiple sources have told Sandy’s Spiel that Matt Kramer and the Milton boys basketball program have severed ties. Effective immediately, assistants Julian Barfield and Sean Revels will lead the program. Milton, state champions in 2010 & 2012, has struggled to find long term stability at the head coaching position since David Boyd left. The Eagles are currently 5-8 overall with Duke-signee Alex O’Connell as Milton’s centerpiece.

Parents received this message of the resignation:

Hello Parents,

This note is to inform you that effective January 9, 2017, Coach Matt Kramer has resigned his duties as Head Basketball Coach at Milton High School due to personal reasons.

Under his leadership, many players earned basketball opportunities at the college level and we won’t forget the 2016 Final Four achievement . We thank Coach Kramer for all he has done for the program and wish him well.

Coach Barfield and Coach Revels will share coaching duties for the remainder of this 2017 season. GO EAGLES!

St. Anne-Pacelli lands new Head Coach Corry Black

Coming off of an Elite Eight appearance in Class A-Private, the program’s most successful season in school history, St. Anne-Pacelli turns to new leadership after Alan Griffin, head boys basketball coach and athletic director left in the offseason to become White County High School AD after serving nine years in Columbus.

Replacing Griffin is Corry Black, a fixture in the Columbus basketball community for over a decade. Black served as an assistant coach at Columbus State University from 2002-2008, first starting as a video coordinator. Black got his first opportunity coaching back in 2000.

“I didn’t play any college basketball,” explained Black. “I’m from Tifton. I went to Southern Union on a cross country scholarship and just stayed around the game. The coach didn’t have an assistant coach, so I basically was his assistant coach for two years and we won two state championships and went to the national tournament.”

After a two-year stint at Southern Union State C.C., Black spent the next six seasons at Columbus State before serving as an assistant at Chattahoochee Valley C.C. for the 2008-09 season.

Giving Back

Since 2009, Black has made it a point to help student-athletes better themselves on and off the court through CB Hoops. The organization puts on multiple showcases, tournaments and leagues throughout the year to better connect high school athletes to college coaches while also preaching the importance of education.

“I just wanted to help more kids,” said Black about why he launched cblackhoops.com. “Instead of recruiting 12 guys at Columbus State, I want to help kids all across the country. When I started CB Hoops I was able to do that and touch more kids through this program, holding showcase events and different things.”

Aside from the high school level, Black’s influence is still felt at the college stage. He serves as the Assistant Director of JucoReport.com, the No. 1 Junior College Basketball site in the nation where he helps organize major events such as The Battle of the South Jamboree, ATL Live Spring Showcase and more.

Leading the Ship

Black jumped at the opportunity to coach at St. Anne-Pacelli.

“It’s here in Columbus. That was attractive that I didn’t have to move my family. I can still continue to do what I’m doing,” explained Black on why becoming a Viking was too good of a spot to pass up. “St. Anne, they had a good run. Coach Alan Griffin did a great job over there…To be honest, I want to see if I can build it back up to what Coach Griffin did. Coach Griffin had it rolling and he did an amazing job and I just want to keep that momentum going and help the community out.”

Black is set to meet with the players for the first time today, Tuesday, October 11 at 12:10 p.m. With eight seniors graduating from last year’s 17-10 team, Black’s message to the group will be simple.

“Let’s try to keep the momentum going from last year. They got to the state tournament. I want to just keep that going. Let’s try to keep the tradition going, let’s try to make it a tradition. Let’s not just be a one hit wonder.”

Macon United HypeSouth Elite changing Middle Georgia hoops

As the summer travel ball season heats up, teams and players begin to make a name for themselves. One program that has slowly been on the rise is 14U Macon United HypeSouth Elite, a third-year program taking baby steps into becoming a contender on the bigger circuits.

Consisting of players in the surrounding Middle Georgia areas such Macon, Jones County, Monroe County and Wilkinson County, Head Coach Armand Burnett and Assistant Coach Kowacie Reeves Sr. are trying to build not only a basketball power, but better young men.

“The idea behind the beginning of the Macon United HypeSouth program, was to create a positive outlet for the inner city youth in the Macon & Middle Georgia area (specifically Macon), due to the ongoing violence among youth in the area,” explained Reeves.

Burnett added that they founded Macon United with the goal to, “rebuild the basketball culture in the Macon and Middle Georgia area.”

“We provide mentoring services, academic assistance, as well as exposure opportunities for the kids in our program,” continued Reeves. “Additionally, we are looking to start the HypeSouth Scholarship Fund that will be awarded to graduating high school student-athletes who maintain a 3.0 GPA or higher and have no behavior referrals.”

The core of Macon United HypeSouth consists of Bryson Wooten, Courtney Green, Kowacie Reeves Jr. and Jehlen Cannady.

The last name Wooten should be a familiar one for those in Jones County and neighboring areas. Bryson, a 5-10 point guard, is the first cousin of Jones County standout Devin Wooten, who averaged 23.9 points, 4.0 assists, 3.9 rebounds and 2.6 steals per game his senior season while being named Sandy’s Spiel Class AAAAA All-State Honorable Mention. Wooten, much like his older cousin, has an uncanny feel for the game and an ability to catch fire at the drop of a bucket. He is the catalyst offensively, averaging a team-leading 16 points, six assists and two steals per game through Macon United’s first three tournaments. Wooten could see varsity time early in his high school career as the Greyhounds will begin to rebuild after losing their top three scorers to graduation.

Bryson Wooten
Bryson Wooten

Inside the paint is where Courtney Green controls the action. Standing 6-3, Green is set to attend Rutland High School next year. The long and lanky shot blocking specialist could have a few more inches left in him to grow. Right now defense is his calling card, altering shots and cleaning up misses. He is averaging a double-double through the summer at 12 points, 13 rebounds and three blocks per game.

IMG_0517
Courtney Green

Kowacie Reeves Jr. is the youngest of the bunch playing up a year, but that hasn’t stopped the sweet shooting two-guard from becoming an important piece to the Macon United HypeSouth puzzle. The 13-year-old is a marksman from deep, knocking down 7-of-8 from behind the stripe this weekend including a 25-point outburst in a 61-51 victory over Active Elite at the North Forsyth Shootout, a tournament in which Macon United finished 3-1, falling short in the championship game to ELW Future Stars 41-40. For the summer Kowacie is averaging 10 points per game and leads the team in three-pointers made.

Kowacie Reeves Jr.
Kowacie Reeves Jr.

Lastly it is Jehlen Cannady, a 5-10 combo guard, who gives Macon United their toughness. Cannady will attend Westside-Macon High School next year and will bring his contagious attitude with him. Coach Reeves declared him a “true leader” and a bulldog on defense. His effort is never called into question. Cannady can be counted on to hustle and get after it each game when guarding opposing ball handlers.

Macon United HypeSouth Elite isn’t just winning on the court they are also winning in the classroom and in the community. The sky can be the limit for these young men with Reeves Sr. and Burnett lending their guidance and advice along the way.

Top Boys Basketball Coaching Openings

Griffin (7-18)

Key Pieces: JR – C – 7’0 Tyshaun Crawford  9.2 ppg, 10.1 rpg, 3.0 bpg

Outlook: The Bears were stuck in the difficult R4-AAAA with the likes of Jonesboro, Walnut Grove and Eagle’s Landing. A change of scenery in Region 5-AAAAA should help Griffin be much more competitive with a blossoming big man in the middle.

Athens Academy (8-17)

Key Pieces: JR – F – 6’2 – Jacob Hudson  15.5 ppg, 7.3 rpg, 3.1 apg
FR – G – 5’8 – Payton Bowles IV 7.2 ppg

Outlook: Athens Academy will once again be in Region 8-A, a cluster that looks wide open behind Lakeview Academy. Jacob Hudson is slated to return for his senior season and gives whoever is head coach, a true go-to guy. Payton Bowles IV came on strong late in the year but must cut down on his turnovers in year two.

South Gwinnett (5-20)

Key Pieces: JR – F – 6’4 – D’onte Torrence
SO – G – 6’1 – Gimal Evans
JR – G – 6’2 – Angelo Taylor

Outlook: There will never be a shortage of talent in Gwinnett County. That’s the good thing. The bad thing is that there will never be a shortage of talent trading hands. The Comets are going to be stuck in the brutal Region 8-AAAAAAA with Newton, Shiloh and Grayson. Only three seniors graduate off last year’s 5-win team. Next year’s team will be loaded with seniors and juniors.

Lakeside-Evans (11-13)

Key Pieces: JR – PF – Deon Berrien  14.8 ppg, 13 rpg, 1.5 bpg
FR – G – Kalen Williams 13.7 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 2.8 apg
JR – F – Kre’Sean Hall 11.1 ppg, 6.9 rpg

Outlook: The Lakeside-Evans job is one of the best available in terms of talent on the roster and an ability to turn things around quickly. The Panthers are in Region 3-AAAAAA with Heritage-Conyers as the heavy favorite. Kalen Williams is a sweet shooting guard with big potential to become one of the best players the school has seen in years. Deon Berrien is a force inside and Kre’Sean Hall is a nice compliment as well.

Grovetown (11-13)

Key Pieces: SO – G – Eric Graham  14.8 ppg, 1.5 spg
SO – PG – Chance Fugghett 7.4 ppg

Outlook: Leading scorer Shamar Barrett is graduating but the Warriors should still have a nice youthful backcourt in Region 3-AAAAAA. Eric Graham and Chance Fugghett both have opportunities to improve over the next two years. Seven sophomores are set to return while two juniors will play their final season in 2016-17.

Dutchtown (11-15)

Key Pieces: JR – G – 6’2 – Bryce Parks 11.1 ppg

Outlook: Bryce Parks will need a big senior season to help the Bulldogs in Region 4-AAAAA. If Dutchtown can put some talent around him, the Dogs could be a competitive bunch. Playing in Region 4-AAAA last year should prepare them. Seven seniors will graduate meaning Parks and others will have a greater role.

Duluth (16-10)

Key Pieces: JR – G – 6’0 – Brandon Blair
JR – F – 6’5 – Jalen Hodges
SO – G – 6’2 – Will Huzzie
SO – G – 6’0 – Adam Flagler
FR – C – 6’10 – Alex Powell

Outlook: If the pieces remain intact, the Duluth job is hands down the best on the market in terms of talent and program history. A strong potential starting five is already in line with key pieces set to return. Alex Powell altered countless shots as a freshman and if he can put on weight, he could be a force inside with his advanced skillset offensively. Adam Flagler and Jalen Hodges are two veterans that can ease the transition under a new head coach.

Dawson County (13-13)

Key Pieces: SO – C – 6’8 – Gabe Bryant
SO – G – 6’1 – Cullen Reed
SO – G – 5’9 – Jeremiah Crumley

Outlook: Dawson County could be on the verge of something with everyone returning. Eight sophomores littered the roster headlined by big man Gabe Bryant who will be a D-I big man as he continues to grow his game. If Bryant and the rest of the core remains in place, the Tigers could have some bite in Region 7-AAA.