HAZARD – A familiar name for Kentucky high school basketball fans will take the reins as head coach of the Perry Central Commodores next season, as Shannon Hoskins was officially hired for the job on Wednesday.
Hoskins, a standout guard for Clay County High School in the 1990s, was rumored to have been at the top of the list for replacing Kevin Spurlock, who announced last month that he would no longer coach at Perry Central after one season. Hoskins has served as an assistant coach at Perry Central for the past five years under coaches Spurlock and Allan Hatcher, and will be the third head coach in as many years for the Commodores.
He said on Wednesday that he’s ready to get started on a new season.
“Perry Central, in my estimation, is one of the top two or three jobs in the mountains, and I’m really excited about it,” Hoskins said.
Fans of the Commodores are used to winning seasons. Since 2008, Perry Central has amassed a 134-53 record, reaching the 14th Region finals five times and the Sweet 16 once in 2011. Under coaches Hatcher and Spurlock, the Commodores were able to win with a methodical half-court offense and a focus on the defensive end. Hoskins said he has an offense he prefers to run, but he won’t know what sort of system he will implement until he meets his team.
“As far as what we have and are going to have next year, I would love to run and jump and press and play that way, but you never know until the year comes around who you’re going to have,” he said. “So, I’ll just wait until that point and see what we’ve got, and go with the players we have. I feel like as coach, you have to dictate what you do with what you have.”
Hoskins said his main goal will be continuing to keep Perry Central as one of the top teams in the region. He will presumably have a talented roster with which to work with incoming sophomore guard Braxton Beverly and senior forward Justin Johnson available to return from last year’s team.
“I would just like to keep the program running like it has been,” he said. “We’ve been either regional champion or in the regional final all but one year out the last five or six years. I’d just like to keep it going in that direction.”