E.A. Sports Today

Changes at PV

Chambless told his tenure as Raiders’ boys basketball coach is over, had the team on the verge of being competitive again
By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today
Just when Ryan Chambless has gotten the Pleasant Valley basketball program on the verge being relevant again, it’s looking like the rug is coming out from under him.
The Raiders enjoyed their winningest season in years this winter (11-15) and were playing for a .500 season into the final week of the regular season. But with former coach Ronnie Preston due to return from military service and Chambless’ teaching unit at the school about to go away the former Alexandria and Jacksonville State guard is about to be out of position.
Chambless knew this was a possibility for several weeks, but had been holding out hope an alternative solution could be found. Now it appears he’s run out of options. He was directed to hand over the program’s scheduling duty to girls coach Brad Hood. The only way he could remain as a coach there, even if Preston returned only to his teaching spot, was if he held a certified teaching position at the school, a policy that also is expected to claim Weaver boys basketball coach Marcus Herbert.
Chambless does hold an administrative certification as well, but administrators are prohibited from serving as coaches. Former Raiders girls basketball coach Jeremy Wallace surrendered those duties when he became an assistant principal at Alexandria in 2014 before returning to PV as an assistant principal last year.
Whomever becomes PV’s next coach is expected to have a competitive team next season as the Raiders’ starting five is returning intact.
“The word I was told yesterday morning is that I’m done,” Chambless said. “It just stinks because the first two years were so horrendous and there wasn’t even an opportunity to try to be successful. This year at least we were competitive. We had gotten a lot better and I won’t be able to reap the benefit of it.
“I’ve put my time and energy into this profession, done things the right way and worked my tail off. I’ve worked through the bad times and the good times and tried to get the most out of whoever I was around. Now it’s like being left out of the draft at Talladega. I kind of feel like Dale Earnhardt Jr.; he jumps out on his own and nobody goes with him and everybody’s passing him.”
During his 12-year coaching tenure, Chambless has coached the boys and girls teams at Jacksonville, taking the girls team to the state title in 2012 and back to the title game in 2015, and at Ohatchee, St. Clair County and Cleburne County.

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