At least for the time being, Bryan England is ready to focus on being a dad.
Citing family reasons, England announced via social media on Wednesday that he has resigned as the head coach of the St. Albans boys basketball team after four seasons. He spent the prior three seasons as the head coach at Winfield and also spent six years as an assistant.
Though England left the door open for an eventual return to coaching, for the time being he said it was time to be more present in his own home.
“I have two kids that are 9 and 5, and, really, it comes down to my 9-year-old,” England said. “She’s at what me and my wife consider a crucial stage right now, she’s very involved in some things and we feel like emotionally she needs me to be a little more present. She values time with me; her whole life she’s been a coach’s kid, so that’s her normal.
“The time we put into doing it the way we feel like is right, sometimes sacrifices have to be made, and at times it’s family. A lot of coaches balance it pretty well, but every family is unique and different, and specifically for my daughter right now, it’s important that I give her a lot of time.”
All told, England’s teams went 70-87 in his seven head coaching seasons, but there were certainly highs along the way, specifically a Class AAA Region 3 championship and state-tournament berth for the Red Dragons in 2020. The state tournament was nixed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
That moment, which was earned with a win over Woodrow Wilson, is the one that stands out most to England in terms of his coaching career on the court. But more so than that, the everyday process will be what he most misses.
“The biggest thing for me is the opportunity and platform I have to impact a young person’s life,” England said. “To be in that locker room, to be at practice ... any coach will tell you their favorite part of the job is practice and the day-to-day process and grind of being a coach. We love it. I still love it. The relationships you build with those kids, it’s something that won’t be able to be replaced and what I’ll miss most.”
St. Albans Athletic Director Rick Whitman said the school would begin the process of searching for a replacement, though no candidates had emerged as of now.