Jo Jo English, the man who guided the Sumter High School boys basketball program to its first 4A state title in 30 years this past season, has resigned as head coach.
“Jo Jo English submitted his letter of resignation this morning to Human Resources and to Sumter High School Principal Nicholas Pearson,” Sumter School District Superintendent Frank Baker said in a statement released on Friday. “The school district plans to post the position of head varsity basketball coach next week.
“Jo Jo has done an outstanding job coaching at Sumter High School. Not only did he lead the Varsity Gamecocks to a State Championship title, he developed a rapport with the students and was a positive role model. I appreciate his leadership and wish him the very best with his future endeavors.”
English could not be reached for comment on whether he had another job in line.
English was the Gamecock head coach for two years, posting a 37-12 record.
After going 17-6 in his first season and leading SHS to the lower state championship game, English guided SHS to a 20-6 record and its first state crown since the 1984-85 season.
The Gamecocks defeated Hillcrest 61-55 at Colonial Life Arena in Columbia to win the title.
Sumter was English’s first full-time head coaching position. He was the girls head coach at Scott’s Branch High School for a few games in the 2011-12 season when Lady Eagles head coach Ruth Coard was killed in an automobile accident during the season.
English was a standout player at Lower Richland High in Hopkins in the late 1980s, leading the Diamond Hornets to a pair of 4A state titles. He went on to an outstanding career at the University of South Carolina and played parts of three seasons in the National Basketball Association with the Chicago Bulls.
English’s resignation comes with the start of official preseason practice just over a month away on Nov. 2. The season starts on Dec. 1 at Lower Richland.