TYLER, Texas (KETK) – It’s been more than a year since Robert Sampson was manning the sidelines for the Chapel Hill Bulldogs boys basketball team.
“My situation at Chapel Hill changed, you know, I stayed there last year and just kind of checked myself out and see where I was,” said Sampson. “Got really, really hungry for the opportunity to be a head coach again.”
His opportunity wasn’t far away, as he takes over a Cumberland Academy team, which has experienced some of its best years on the court in the past two seasons.
“The opportunity that Cumberland Academy is here, close by, I can’t imagine a better setup than Cumberland at this time,” said Sampson.
For the girls team, Cumberland promoted middle school coach, Roddricka Patton, to her first high school head coaching job.
But while it may be her first time in the lead chair, Patton has already made a name for herself in East Texas as a player, winning three state championships at Neches High School, then two national titles at Trinity Valley Community College in Athens, before helping Oklahoma State reach two NCAA tournaments, while finishing in the top ten nationally in assists as a senior.
“I’ve been wanting to be a high school coach almost my whole life,” said Patton. “I love the game of basketball, so being able to teach it to the kids and coming from middle school to high school is a huge opportunity for me.”
It’s an uneasy time right now to start any new job, but both Patton and Sampson say they can’t wait to see what the Knights and Lady Knight have to offer, whenever the first game tips off.
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