David Sneed will be recommended to the Kanawha County School Board as the new Nitro High School baseball coach, though as far as Sneed and the Wildcats’ baseball program are concerned, there’s nothing new about it.
Sneed has been an assistant at Nitro for 23 years, though last year his role somewhat diminished.
After taking a couple steps back in that role — and after coach Brian Withrow resigned — Sneed said he had a decision to make.
“I was either going to be all in or all out,” Sneed said.
Sneed began coaching at Nitro in 1996 along with Brian Sutphin and Rick Whitman, both state-championship winners at Hurricane and St. Albans, respectively.
He was also an integral part of the staff under Steve Pritchard as the Wildcats claimed Class AAA titles in 2008 and 2010 and finished as a runner-up in 2009, 2012 and 2015. The school’s baseball field — Brandon Matthew Sneed Field – is named for Sneed’s late son.
Indeed, Sneed’s imprint is all over the program and now, after nearly two and a half decades, it is his ship to guide.
“Over the last several years, I felt like having a young coach that maybe relates to young players better than an old coach is the better thing to do,” Sneed said. “But I’ve changed how I think over the last 10, 12 years and how I relate to younger people.
“I feel like I can relate to younger people,” he added. “Our program had a good run for a lot of years and we did things a certain way and we’re going to get back to doing things that way and try to get back to the state tournament.
“I understand what’s going on and what we need to do to get the program back to where we want to be and back to where the community expects us to be. I’m ready to go.”