Joining the nest: Aycock hires Brooks as new varsity football coach
By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on June 5, 2013 1:47 PM
PIKEVILLE -- The wait is over.
Charles B. Aycock finally has a new football coach.
Steve Brooks was officially introduced Tuesday afternoon as the newest Golden Falcon to join the nest. He replaces Randy Pinkowski, who resigned in late December after guiding the Class 3-A program for 14 seasons.
"A big relief, most definitely," said Charles Davis, Aycock's athletics director. "Since day one when we first interviewed him, I was sold on Coach Brooks. He talked about being a family here at C.B. Aycock, the community support we have and the commitment (from our players and staff).
"I think he's the right fit for us and I'm excited to have him here."
A 36-year-old native of Jacksonville, Brooks spent the last eight seasons at Ayden-Grifton. He served as the head JV coach, but participated on a close-knit staff that shared responsibilities during practice each day and on game nights.
The Chargers won the 2012 Carolina 1-A Conference championship and finished state runners-up that season.
Prior to his arrival at Ayden-Grifton, he spent the 2004 season on John Thompson's staff at East Carolina University. A former baseball standout, Brooks started his career as the defensive linebackers coach at Richlands High School.
He met with the Aycock players last Tuesday.
"Every single one of them walked up at the end of the meeting, gave me their first name and told me 'we're excited to have you here'," Brooks said. "They're happy they finally have a head coach. They can see what he looks like, know what he's about.
"I talked to them about my expectations. We're not here only as their football coaches, we want them to be better young men. We're not going to coach them up about football all the time ... going to have serious talks about being a husband, being a father, being a better boyfriend, being a better son."
Brooks takes over a program that missed having a head coach for five-plus months. The assistants diligently worked with the athletes in the weight room during the offseason, an effort that drew high praise from their new coach.
He called it a "golden situation."
"How many places can you go in the state where there is a new head coaching walking into a job where the staff has been 'all-in' without having a leader?" Brooks said. "It starts with leadership at the top of the school ... (Principal) Dr. (Earl) Moore and Coach Davis. I give them all the credit.
"Also, it's a testament to how hard the kids want to work here and how successful they want to be. I told them this is our program, we're going to do this together."
Aycock finished 6-6 last season and won just two home games. The Golden Falcons advanced to the second round of the N.C. High School Athletic Association playoffs -- one of seven postseason trips during Pinkowski's tenure on the sideline.
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