By now most of you know that Mingo Central High School has lost its head boys’ basketball coach. Frankie Smith decided to take a similar position at Sheldon Clark High School.
It was all caused by the domino effect.
Recently Harry Kirk resigned as head coach at Chapmanville High School. Former Williamson coach Allan Hatcher then left Perry County Central (Ky.) High School and was hired last week at Chapmanville.
Since Perry Central was without a coach, they went into Martin County, Ky. and talked their coach, Kevin Spurlock, into moving to Perry County. That left the position at Sheldon Clark open.
Officials in Martin County then went after Frankie Smith. He decided it was best for his family to make that move, even before his first season started at Mingo Central. Fans and boosters will have to accept that decision and move on.
Of course, Smith may have never come back home to Mingo County had there not been an opening at the new consolidated school. That school’s first head coach, Duane Estepp, quit at the end of the season last spring.
Smith, citing that he wanted to return home, left Saginaw Valley State University in Michigan and was hired to build the Miner’s program.
Thus, all of these moves are the ongoing coaching carousel.
It happens all the time at the college level. If a Division One coach is hired away from one school, which may have just fired their head coach, they will try to woo someone away from another school. Many times a coach at a smaller school will be offered more money to move up a level.
That in turn will leave another vacancy at the smaller school. So the cycle never stills.
Coaches change jobs all the time. Unlike in years past, where many coaches stayed at one school for most of their careers, it seems as if now coaches move on for what they think are greener pastures.
In the case of Allan Hatcher, the former Wolfpack head coach, he just wanted to move back to his native Logan County to be close to his mother and family. He had retired in Kentucky, so he was lucky the job came open at Chapmanville. (His son Mark is the head coach at nearby Logan.)
We never know why people make decisions. There are always hurt feelings, disappointment and anger.
A good example is when Rich Rodriguez left West Virginia, his alma mater, for what he thought was a better job at Michigan. That didn’t work out for him. He was fired and is now at Arizona. But like a cat tossed in the air, coaches usually land on their feet.
Then there was Dan Dakich, the former Bowling Green coach and Indiana player, that was hired at WVU to replace the retired Gale Catlett. Dakich bailed after only a week.
That, however, turned out great for the Mountaineers. They eventually hired John Beilein, who turned the program around and took them back to the NCAA tourney and national prominence.
Then Beilein decided to move to Michigan. That opened the door for former WVU player Bob Huggins to return to Morgantown. Huggins took the Mountaineers to the Final Four and led them to a big upset over Kentucky during that tournament run.
Huggins had to leave Kansas State, where he had coached the year before. He only stayed there one season before he resigned to take the job back in his home state. I’m sure Kansas State fans were upset, but WVU fans were cheering.
The coaching carousel was seen at its best.
It seems things always work out. At times, people just don’t understand and the passionate fans really get upset.
But, in the grand scheme of things, is it that important? Maybe, if you think of the kids that are involved. The student athletes at all levels in sports need guidance.
That should be the number one concern. Take care of the kids and help them become better players and better people.
The rest - wins and losses - will take care of itself.
(Kyle Lovern is the sports editor at the Williamson Daily News. Comments can be sent to email@example.com)