By Gene Stanley/Sports Correspondent
For Southside High School boys basketball coach Kevin Troup, family comes first.
That belief was evident in his latest move in stepping down as Panther coach to assist the varsity girls program at Gadsden City High.
Troup’s resignation of his coaching duties was accepted at the July 23 Etowah County Board of Education meeting.
“My daughter (freshman Haley) wanted to go back to Gadsden City, to play basketball with all of her childhood friends,” he said.
“She still hangs out with them and goes to church with them and she made it known she was going to Gadsden City.
“I guess the line was drawn in the sand and I chose family. Now she’s happy and I’m still happy because I get to coach with Jeremy (Titans girls coach Brooks).”
Troup emphasized that there was no problem at Southside and that he loved it there. He stressed that there was a lot of support from every corner and he was totally happy with the athletes, which won four county championships and two area titles in Troup’s six seasons.
The Panthers amassed a 107-57 record in that time.
“As far as administration, community and church support, there’s not a better place to coach than Southside,” Troup said. “I’m going to continue to teach at Southside for the time being.”
Troup has never coached a girls high school team, but he has experience coaching Haley’s rec league teams.
Troup was also the head coach at Emma Sansom for five years, where his teams went 98-32.
Troup’s top assistant, Scott Elkins, is also going to start helping Brooks at Gadsden City.
“I’m excited,” Troup said. “Jeremy and I are great friends and we’ve known each other forever. It’ll be like a homecoming.”
When Troup was an Emma Sansom senior, Brooks was a freshman. Both played under legendary boys basketball coach George Baker.
Meanwhile, Chad Holderfield, Southside’s junior varsity coach, has been promoted to head coach.
“It’s very exciting,” Holderfield said. “They surprised me with it. I had no idea about any of it until it actually happened. When I found out Kevin was going,
Holderfield coached the Southside junior varsity boys basketball team for seven years.
“There’ll be a lot of similarities between what Kevin did and what I’ll do,” he said. “But there’ll be some changes because I’ve got to be myself and not somebody else. I’ve never had a chance to be a head coach, so I’m thrilled right now.”
While savoring this opportunity, Holderfield said he will miss Troup and Elkins immensely.
“Kevin was a great mentor for me, helping me learn a lot about the game,” Holderfield said. “I am so thankful for him helping me become a better coach. But at the same time, I’m going to really miss him.”