Dugger back with Elizabethton girls

Douglas Fritz • Mar 14, 2012 at 9:59 PM

Another shakeup is happening for Elizabethton basketball.

Len Dugger has decided to return to the girls’ program as head coach, leaving an opening on the boys’ side.

Cyclones athletic director Mike Wilson, who filled in as interim coach for the girls, said he doesn’t think Dugger will have any issues returning to the girls after leaving for the boys’ program in mid-December.

“I think he’s got credibility with them, and I think it’s very easy for him to have credibility,” said Wilson. “Len was moved from the girls to the boys’ program. It was not something he pursued. Everyone here knows that.

“It was something we did here because it was the best thing we could do at the time.”

Dugger went on to lead the boys to a 20-win season, but they were upset in the first round of the District 1-AA tournament by Johnson County. The Longhorns used stall tactics in the first quarter, and eventually built a 15-8 halftime lead before holding on for a one-point win.

Wilson guided the girls to a 20-win season, but they were upset in the Region 1-AA quarterfinals by Greeneville. He said stepping back down from coaching was just part of the process.

“I don’t think I was ever going to be a long-term solution,” said Wilson.

Elizabethton’s main focus at this point is filling the vacant boys’ position.

“We have no concerns about the girls’ program, but we have to make sure we get the right person for the boys’ program,” said Wilson.

The boys’ program should be attractive, coming off the 20-win season with only one senior on that team. Wilson said the job was posted Monday.

“It is my understanding we will begin interviewing next Friday,” said Wilson. “After that I hope we have things wrapped up very quickly.

“I know for a fact we already have applicants we would be perfectly fine with having. People have applied that I feel comfortable with.”

Included in that mix are middle school coaches Lucas Honeycutt and Michael McMeans. Honeycutt guided the eighth-grade girls to an undefeated season and a sectional championship.

“I know they are young, but I believe both are good coaches,” said Wilson. “I was sweating bullets at first when Len said he was going back to the girls. But I think we will have more quality choices than we’ve had in a while.”

Recommended for You