ECRU • Rob Browning liked the idea of getting back to coaching girls basketball – so when the North Pontotoc girls job became available, he jumped at the opportunity.
Browning was approved as the next Lady Vikings’ head coach last Thursday following the departure of eight-year coach Matt Waldrop, who left to assist South Pontotoc’s boys.
“The desire to get back to coaching girls was a drawing factor,” said Browning. “I’m closer to my house and it gives me more time with my kids, but it’s one of those situations were it was the perfect timing.”
Browning, an Ingomar native, has spent the last eight years coaching basketball at Myrtle, including the first five years as the head coach for both girls and boys programs.
His time with the Hawks was considered a success with five playoff appearances and two 20-win seasons. Myrtle was 9-8 this past season with a 64-53 loss to Baldwyn in the first round of the Class 1A state playoffs.
The five years over the Lady Hawks were a rollercoaster. Browning’s first season, the girls went 1-17, before making the playoffs in each of the next two seasons, including a 16-13 mark in 2015-16. Following that, the Lady Hawks went through some more struggles as he dealt with a very young crop of players.
It’s a similar challenge he’ll face at North Pontotoc, which loses second team All-Area selection Shemiah Hadley (18 ppg), MUW signee Maddie Guerin, and two other starters from a 20-7 team that lost in the second round to 4A champs, Pontotoc.
“Looking at the roster, you can say we are young. There’s inexperience but I can’t wait to see them get after it a little bit,” Browning said. “I don’t think going from boys to girls, I’m going to approach it much different. In 4A girls, you better be physical and get up and down the floor.”