Sharman White is a legendary high school basketball coach in Georgia who has won seven state titles. Currently the head boys’ basketball coach at Pace Academy (Atlanta) after spending the last two seasons as an assistant at Georgia State, White was named ALL-USA Coach of the Year in 2014 and National High School Association Coach of the Year in 2016. Now he’s agreed to give USA Today Sports exclusive access into his world by chronicling everything from intimate details about his team to his methods to his everyday life in a monthly blog.
AN HONOR LIKE NO OTHER
Happy hoops season to everyone!
Basketball at every level has kicked off and for us purists, there couldn’t be more excitement. For coaches, players and parents alike comes all of the excitement and anxiety associated with an orange round leather object. For coaches, it’s all about preparation and attention to detail.
For players, it’s about showing what you have done in the off-season to prepare for these moments that will dictate the ups and downs of the season itself. For parents, it’s the anxiety of every game, every play and every moment that will become a part of memories for their children.
We opened up the season on the road facing a familiar opponent in Miller Grove.
For me, it was nostalgic because of all the memories that I was fortunate to be a part of at ‘The Grove,’ winning numerous championships, mentoring young people and working with great colleagues made for a special period of time in my life. On this game night, I was bestowed an honor like no other.
The basketball court at Miller Grove was named in my honor. This was an amazing and truly humbling experience. To be able to see my signature placed on the court and to share with my family, former players, former colleagues, friends and current players was special and made for a night I will never forget. I could only imagine my recently deceased older brother (Nate) being ecstatic for me about this honor as he was my biggest fan and never missed a game at Miller Grove.
Love you and miss you Big Bro!
I have always said and will hold true to the notion that the success we experienced at ‘The Grove’ was a credit to the players, coaches, parents and community that make up the people of Miller Grove. A special place that will always hold a special place in my heart…#BLEEDPURPLE
We were fortunate to get the victory in that game versus a talented and well-coached group from Miller Grove. I was proud of how our players performed under the circumstances of that night. On the following Saturday, we participated in the Hawks Naismith Tip-Off Event which we were fortunate to be the host of.
This event was filled with top teams and players from around the state. The event also marked the debut of the 30-second shot clock in Georgia basketball. The response all around from the use of the shot clock was overwhelmingly positive and welcomed in Georgia high school basketball. Hopefully, it becomes more than an experiment in the near future. We played #1-ranked class AAAA Woodward Academy in the finale in front of a packed house at Pace that included college head coaches (Roy Williams-UNC, Leonard Hamilton-FSU, Tom Crean-UGA, Amir Abdur-Rahim-KSU) where we fell short 56-52 in an epic early season match-up.
Would have like to have had a better result at the end of the week, but I can truly say that this week was a week like no other and for that reason, I was grateful to be able to enjoy it.
That leads me to the time of the year where being thankful supersedes the problems of the world: Happy Thanksgiving!
White’s Message: “Once you know it’s possible, it becomes your ‘new’ normal.” #ItsLevelsToIt
Don’t forget to follow Coach Sharman White on Twitter: @CoachSWhite