There will be a new face on sideline when the Darlington boys’ basketball team takes the court next season.
The school announced in a release Thursday that Nathan West has been named the new head coach of the Tigers as well as assistant athletic director. West is replacing Bradley Pierson, whose family is relocating to Tennessee for his wife’s job.
A native of Anniston, Alabama, West has over nine years of coaching experience at both the high school and collegiate level. He comes to Darlington from Franklin County High School in Eastpoint, Florida, where he was the head boys’ basketball coach and assistant principal for the last two years.
West has big plans for the student-athletes at Darlington, from creating a culture of winning both on the court and in the classroom to becoming proud alumni of the school.
“I will teach the students to dream big every day,” West said in the release. “I want our program to be a top-ranked program in the state and I want our graduates to come back and see the winning tradition continue. It starts with the relentless pursuit of excellence by the people at the top and I will bring energy, enthusiasm, and attention to detail every single day.”
During his first season at Franklin County, West’s team finished as district runner-ups and hosted a regional championship for the first time in the school’s history, as well as made an appearance in the state Elite 8.
This past season, Franklin County finished as district and region champions, and made a Final Four appearance, all firsts for the program in over a decade.
“Our kids bought into the importance of hard work, commitment and sacrifice,” West said of his time at Franklin County. “I enjoy our teams being put in tough situations against tough competition. It helps our team grow and build character, which eventually will lead to success in the postseason.”
“I am thrilled that Nathan will be our next varsity boys’ basketball coach and assistant athletic director,” said Eddie Guth, Darlington’s director of athletics. “He is smart, charismatic, and a very hard worker. We look forward to his leadership, positive attitude, and delightful spirit.”
Pierson, who graduated from Darlington in 2005, had been the boys’ head basketball coach at his alma mater since 2017. In May he was announced as Darlington’s varsity cross country coach. Middle grades science teacher Andrew Beckman will now serve in that role.
West holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Birmingham-Southern College and a Masters in Educational Leadership from the University of North Texas.
West played a year at Marion Military Institute before transferring to Birmingham-Southern where he was a co-captain of the team that won a conference championship in 2010. He has been an assistant basketball coach at Iowa Central Community College as well as Saks High School in Anniston, Alabama, and Oxford High School in Oxford, Alabama.