CHS’s Wright honored as NFHS Sectional, State Coach for 2016

By Mark Clark

It was a double whammy for Central High boys basketball coach Bobby Wright recently when the National Federation of State High School Associations Coaches Association released its annual Coach of the Year awards. In a joint release from NFHS Executive Director Robert B. Gardner and Richard G. Baker, chair of the NFHS Coaches Association, Wright was selected as the organization’s State and Sectional Coach of the Year for 2016.

“It is certainly an honor anytime you receive an award. When you win an award from a national organization, it’s really special,” Wright said.

Wright said he knew he was being nominated by the Alabama High School Athletic Association for the State Coach of the Year award, but was not aware his name was being considered for the higher Sectional honor which also made him eligible for consideration for National Coach of the Year.

“That kind of blew me away. It humbled me. I was inducted into the Alabama High School Hall of Fame not too long ago and now this - it’s just an honor. I don’t know of any other coaches in the area to be selected for Sectional Coach of the Year,” Wright said of the award.

The Sectional Coach of the Year award is open to any basketball coach in the Southern section of the NFHS which includes the eight-state area of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. Wright’s 2015-2016 Red Devils basketball team was 32-2 and made it to the finals in the AHSAA Class 7A tournament before losing to McGill-Toolen for the title. His overall coaching record at the end of last season was 578-187.

“It is my honor and privilege to advise you, on behalf of the NFHS Coaches Association, that you have been selected to receive the 2016 South Sectional Coach of the Year award for the sport of Boys Basketball. . . Your contributions to high school athletics are truly deserving of our recognition and thanks,” Gardner said in the letter notifying Wright of his Sectional Coach of the Year award.

The NFHS Coaches Association is the official national coaches association of the National Federation of State High School Associations. All sectional winners were considered for National Coach of the Year in their sport category.

The AHSAA will present Wright with his awards at a later date to be scheduled after the current season ends.