Brian Witherspoon was looking for a new challenge in basketball, and Evergreen High School looked like a good fit.
Evergreen athletic director Keenan Burris hopes it is, too.
Witherspoon, a former assistant coach for the Clark College men’s basketball team, was hired Friday as Evergreen’s new boys basketball coach. He’ll replace Kelly Blankenship, who resigned earlier this month after five seasons with the Plainsmen.
Since 2004, Witherspoon served under Mike Arnold, who was not retained as Clark’s head coach after leading the Penguins to a 25-4 record last season. Before coming to Clark, Witherspoon was an assistant at Portland Community College for four seasons.
“The opportunity at Evergreen came about, and I had a couple of people — former players and parents of former players — recommend that I put my name in the hat for the job,” Witherspoon said. “And I’m glad it worked out.”
Witherspoon works as an academic adviser at Clark.
“Brian met a lot of the expectations that we set out when beginning this process,” Burriss said. “We believe he will help Evergreen students succeed both on and off the court. And we feel this is a great hire for us.”
After spending more than 10 years coaching in college, Witherspoon said he’s ready for the adjustment of coaching at the high-school level.
“In college, you can recruit players with experience and who have the potential of playing at a four-year college,” Witherspoon said. “So the skill level in high school will be different. You have to make the most with the players who come through your program and build off that. So, it will definitely broaden your coaching horizons.”
Witherspoon was impressed with the Evergreen program and where it can go.
“I see a lot of potential,” he said. “They have a nice group of kids coming back, sophomore and juniors who have talent. I think Evergreen will continue to be competitive, and the future is bright.”