Having secured his 800th career win last weekend, Pinewood Prep boys basketball coach Pat Eidson shows no signs of letting up.
In fact, immediately after the monumental win last Saturday against Woodland High, Eidson was talking of winning 900 games, or even 1,000.
Eidson, 60, is in his 38th season of coaching. At his current pace of 21 wins per season, Eidson could reach the 1,000 mark by the time he is 70 years old.
“I feel great, my health is good, so why not?” said Eidson, who is in his 27th season at Pinewood Prep. “I mean I guess a lot of things could happen in 10 years but if I continue to be in good health and still enjoy coaching, I could coach 10 more years.”
Eidson began coaching right out of college and hoped to someday be a college coach. He never imagined being a high school coach for nearly four decades.
“I thought I would try high school coaching for five years and then move to the next level,” he said. “It didn’t take long for me to realize this was my niche so I made a career of it.”
Eidson’s son, Chuck, who starred at Pinewood and played at South Carolina and professionally, was in attendance last week. He feels his father could coach for many more years because of his ability to relate and communicate with his players.
“He loves coaching, loves teaching the game and mentoring these young guys,” Eidson said. “This is really special to be able to see him achieve so much as a coach. This speaks volumes about the relationships he has made with his players as a coach.
“It’s a lot of wins with a lot of different guys. The big thing is, he still has the fire and he has been able to adapt to the difference in players over the years. He still relates to kids.”
Eidson’s focus now turns to the SCISA AAA state playoffs. The Panthers will be a state title contender and the coach is hoping to be peaking in the next two weeks.
“The focus is on getting healthy, all of us together at one time,” Eidson said. “We have only had our core starting lineup for about five games all season because of injuries. But I like our team. We just have to get healthy and hopefully be 100 percent when the playoffs start.”
Dowd, Knight come full circle
Newberry head football coach Todd Knight and West Ashley assistant coach David Dowd go back a long way. While an assistant at Gardner-Webb some 30 years ago, Dowd’s first recruit was Knight. Later, when Dowd became the head coach at Charleston Southern, Dowd hired Knight as his defensive coordinator.
On Wednesday, Dowd’s youngest son Sam signed a letter-of-intent to play football for Knight at Newberry.
“It’s really special that the guy that was my first recruit so many years ago is now the man that my son is going to play for,” Dowd said earlier this week. “It just goes to show how relationships in this business can last for a lifetime.”
The South Carolina Basketball Coaches Association released its latest statewide polls earlier this week.
The Goose Creek girls have been ranked No. 1 in Class AAAAA since the preseason and remain atop the polls this week. Now the Goose Creek boys are in the position, moving to the top of the poll after being ranked third in the previous rankings.
Wando’s girls slipped from second to fourth in Class AAAAA this week. Bishop England is ranked third in both Class AAA polls.
Burke is ranked third in the boys Class AA poll while the girls team is ranked sixth.
In Class A girls, Palmetto Scholars Academy is ranked eighth and Charleston Math and Science is ranked ninth.