High school notebook: Jimmy Williams named AD at West Johnston

tstevens@newsobserver.comJuly 3, 2014 

West Johnston football coach Jimmy Williams, who has 24 years’ coaching experience, has added athletic director duties. He replaces Warren Singleton, who will continue to serve as the school’s varsity softball coach.

Last year was Williams’ first as football coach at the school, but he has been at the school as a teacher and coach since 2011.

He was a successful coach at East Wake, winning two conference championships and building a 65-42 record, before resigning. He later was an assistant coach at Leesville Road before going to West Johnston as an assistant for two years.

He also was an assistant athletic director at East Wake for six years while coaching there.

West Johnson principal Paula Coates said she was thrilled that Williams took the position.

“Coach Williams has both the experience and the enthusiasm necessary for this position, and I am confident he will do a great job leading our athletic program,” she said in a release.

White Oak AD: Chris Grimes, a Millbrook graduate who coached the Wildcats to a state boys tennis title in 2009, has been named athletic director at Jacksonville White Oak. He left Millbrook to become the White Oak boys junior varsity basketball coach in 2010.

He later succeeded Greg Grantham as boys basketball coach.

Gemmell picks Charlotte: Heritage High senior linebacker Jeff Gemmell committed this week to play football at UNC-Charlotte.

The 6-foot-3, 215-pound Gemmell was an all-Cap Eight 4A pick in 2013 after primarily playing defensive end and tight end.

“I really love the coaching staff at Charlotte,” said Gemmell, who also had offers from Army, Charleston Southern and Gardner-Webb. “I feel like it is an up-and-coming program and I believe I can be a part of moving the program in the right direction.”

Gemmell began his high school career at North Raleigh Christian, where he started as a sophomore. He played a little last year at outside linebacker and looks forward to the position shift.

“At outside linebacker, I have to contain, but I also have pass responsibilities,” Gemmell said. “You get more opportunities in the open field and have have the ability to run the entire field.”

Heritage coach Jason McGeorge said Gemmell has been a good leader for the Huskies.

“He has worked extremely hard to earn a scholarship,” McGeorge said. “I am really happy for him. By committing early, I think he has taken some pressure off. He is a very good person.”

Remembering Zamperini: Years before Louis Zamperini became known from the Laura Hillenbrand book “Unbroken,” I interviewed him about the value of high school athletics. He told me that he would not have survived War World II if not for the lessons that he learned through athletics.

He was the fastest high school miler in the world while at Torrance (Calif.) High, running a 4:21.2, and we talked a lot about what high school sports had done for him.

The interview is one that I cherish. Zamperini died at age 97. A movie about his life is scheduled to be released in December.

Coach Randy Moss: Former NFL receiver Randy Moss is expected to coach his son, Thad Moss, at Charlotte Victory Christian this fall. Thad Moss has transferred to the N.C. Independent School Athletic Association school after stops in Kentucky, West Virginia and Rhode Island.

Thad Moss is a 6-foot-4, 240-pound junior, who also plays basketball.

Randy Moss will be the associate head coach at Victory Christian, which finished 7-5 last season.

Randy Moss was a six-time All-NFL receiver and played 14 seasons with the Minnesota Vikings, Oakland Raiders, New England Patriots, Tennessee Titans and San Francisco 49ers. He had 982 receptions for 15,292 yards and 156 touchdowns.

Ashworth wins: Fuquay-Varina High senior Catherine Ashworth shot a final round two-under par 70 to win the Twin States Junior Girls’ Championship at the Columbia Country Club in Blythewood, S.C.

Ashworth finished with a 143, edging Lee County junior Muk Shoomee by a stroke. Shoomee led qualifying with a one-under 71.

D. Clay Best and Jonathan Jones contributed to this story.

Stevens: 919-829-8910

News & Observer is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service