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By Nick Bowton
Salisbury PostBrian Hinson turned the East Rowan football program around this past season. Joe Pinyan won a share of his fifth consecutive CCC title at Salisbury.
Both coaches did jobs that were worthy of praise, but neither one could beat out West Rowan coach Scott Young as the Rowan County Coach of the Year.
Young shared the award with Pinyan last season and won it outright this year, when his Falcons finished 11-2 and won the NPC title, the third consecutive season they’ve won it outright and fourth straight year they’ve gotten at least a piece of the title.
“There were some real good coaching jobs going on in this county this year,” Young said. “There really were. So to win this award this year is maybe a little bit bigger honor than some of the years past. But the work my staff did this year was just phenomenal. I didn’t see us winning 11 ballgames; I don’t think my staff saw us winning 11 ballgames.
“But the players bought into this work way back in February, March. Hard work sort of bred some confidence. Our guys are a confident bunch.”
Credit Young for that, too.
Because West Rowan has had so much success under Young ó the Falcons have now won 25 straight games against county opponents ó players start to believe they can beat anyone. Young had to make them believe that more than ever this season, as West didn’t have quite the talent it did the previous two seasons.
“It shows winning breeds winning,” South coach Jason Rollins said. “That’s what has happened over there.
“To take a team like he did and still have that mentality that’s bred into them, it’s no longer losing ó they believe they can win no matter what.”
Young had the Falcons believing they could win despite the loss of two Shrine Bowl linemen ó one on each side of the ball ó and an East-West All-Star Game offensive lineman. The Falcons started four fresh faces along the offensive line and still opened enough holes to average 284.1 rushing yards per game.
On the defensive line, Young found a young gem in Chris Smith to replace Tristan Dorty, a high school defensive end who’s now a linebacker at Wake Forest.
“He does a good job getting the kids to buy into what the staff is trying to do and what West Rowan as a whole is trying to do,” offensive line coach Joe Nixon said. “He gets the staff and the players and the community and the school to believe in what he’s trying to do. I think you judge a good ballcoach not on wins and losses but on how hard the kids play for you, and I really think our kids lay it on the line for Coach Young.
“We get a lot out of our kids that sometimes ain’t as athletic as the kids we’re playing against. Our kids just play so hard, and I really believe that’s because the kids like Coach Young.”
The assistant coaches must like him too.
In Young’s 10 seasons, the Falcons have lost just six assistant coaches. Young credited his assistants just as much as himself for being named coach of the year, and Nixon said Young’s assistants stick around because they work in a good environment.
“A tough thing that he does that’s tough for some coaches to do is he lets his assistant coaches coach,” Nixon said. “He has a hand in everything because he’s the head man and his name’s on everything, but he lets you do your job as an assistant coach because he trusts you to do your job and he expects you to.
“He just works so hard at it. He demands perfection, and if you don’t get it done as a coach and you don’ get it done as a player, he’ll let you know.”
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Contact Nick Bowton at 704-797-4256 or nbowton@salisburypost.com.

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