GCHS selects new coach for varsity boys basketball

Published 5:33 pm Friday, July 5, 2024

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GATESVILLE – Gates County High School has hired James Simpkins as the head coach of its varsity boys basketball program.

After stints at high schools in Virginia and South Carolina, James Simpkins arrives at Gates County High School as its new boys basketball coach. Contributed Photo

Simpkins, who has a history transforming teams into winning programs, does have a connection to the local area. In 2010, Simpkins was hired as the Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach/Recruiting Coordinator and Academic Coordinator at Chowan University. At that time, Chowan was a member of the storied CIAA Conference which is one of the most competitive and highly regarded conferences in all of college basketball.

While serving as the academic advisor at Chowan, the men’s basketball program achieved the highest overall GPA for two straight years (2.98 in 2010-11 and 3.12 in 2011-12),

Simpkins was also responsible for player development and skill training He saw his effort lead Chowan to rank in the top five in the conference in every offensive category.

Coach Simpkins developed one All CIAA player and one All CIAA Freshmen as well as two All CIAA Tournament team members.

In 2012, Simpkins decided to take on the daunting task of reviving the basketball program at StoneBridge School in Chesapeake, VA. There, Simpkins led the Cavaliers to their first winning regular season record (19-10) in six years as well as their first State Playoff invitation in six years.

His team posted overall statistical improvements in every offensive and defensive category.

In 2013, Simpkins was hired as the Head Coach and Program Director at Genesis Academy in Lynchburg, VA. Genesis was coming off a dismal season (3-27 overall).

In his first year at Genesis Academy they went 20-10 overall with signature wins against national ranked programs.

Coach Simpkins spent two years at Genesis Academy where he complied a 41-19 record.

He also had seven players go on to play D1 basketball and three players move on to the D2 level.

In 2015, Simpkins took the associate head coach and recruiting coordinator position at Legacy Charter School in Greenville, SC. The team posted a 32-9 overall record in his first season there, with nine wins against top 100 nationally ranked programs. Two of those nine wins were against Top 25 teams.

Coach Simpkins was responsible for the development of the guards at Legacy Charter School as well as opponent scouting.

Legacy Charter School participated in the USA Prep National Championship Tournament where they won the National Championship.

In his first recruiting class at Legacy, Simpkins landed a seven player class from NC, VA, SC, MI and NY. All of these players received full scholarship offers.

Coach Simpkins has compiled 121-47 overall record as a head coach. He has helped over 30 players achieve their goals of playing professionally through his vast network of overseas scouts and agents.