By Adam Carrington
For The Signal
Former Valencia boys basketball coach Chad Phillips, who has more than 20 years of coaching experience in California, was introduced as the new boys basketball coach at Allatoona in Acworth, Georgia on Wednesday.
Phillips succeeds Markus Hood, who became the new coach at Marietta after launching Allatoona’s program 10 years ago. During Hood’s tenure, the Buccaneers advanced to back-to-back state championship games in 2015 and ’16, as well as an appearance in the semifinals and two trips to the quarterfinals.
Now, it will be up to Phillips to pick up where Hood left off.
“Markus Hood is going to be hard to replace,” Allatoona athletic director Amie Howard said. “He’s been here since the school started (in 2008). We were trying to find someone who knows the Xs and Os and be a good fit into the community. (Phillips) gave all the right answers, he checked all the boxes, and he also believes in winning.”
“Both (football coach) Gary Varner and (baseball coach) Keith Hansen were on the search committee, and they both felt good about him being a part of the Allatoona family.”
Phillips, who will teach math at Allatoona, said defense is his specialty. He also likes to have his teams score in transition and attack off the dribble.
“It’s exciting to be back in it,” Phillips said. “Coach Hood laid down a foundation, and I am hopeful that I can continue to mold these young men into responsible role models and enjoy their Buccaneer experience.”
Phillips won more than 200 games while at Canyon and Valencia. His teams made appearances in the state playoffs 15 times, including two trips to the quarterfinals and one to the semifinals. Phillips has also groomed more than a dozen players to play at the college level.
Phillips, who has five sons with his wife, Jen, relocated to the metro-Atlanta area last summer and spent the 2017-18 academic year teaching middle school math at Mount Paran Christian School.
Phillips will inherit an Allatoona that went 14-15 in the 2017-18 season, though it finished with an 11-4 record in Region 6AAAAAA play, which was good enough to put the Buccaneers in the state tournament.
The Buccaneers are expected to return 12 players for the new season