Johnson named as Mantooth#039;s replacement

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 14, 2007

Michael Rodgers

William Johnson has been named head basketball coach for Fort Dale Academy following the departure of Reggie Mantooth.

&uot;William has worked with us here on staff for several years,&uot; said headmaster David Brantley.

For the last four years, Johnson has been the coach of the junior varsity boys’ basketball team, in addition to serving as an assistant coach to the varsity boys.

Last year, he led the junior varsity team to a state championship.

&uot;He’s worked in our program for several years under coach Mantooth, and we feel very comfortable with his ability,&uot; Brantley said. &uot;We’re excited to have him take over.&uot;

Even before becoming an assistant coach, Johnson had exposure to Mantooth and his coaching system.

Johnson is a 1996 graduate of Fort Dale and played basketball for three years under Mantooth.

He says that playing and coaching under Mantooth is a great asset to him.

&uot;I learned a great deal from coach Mantooth,&uot; Johnson said. &uot;He’s one of the greatest basketball minds I’ve been around.&uot;

Both Johnson and Brantley feel comfortable with the condition of the basketball program.

&uot;One of the things coach Mantooth told me was that he wouldn’t have left if he didn’t feel like our program was in good shape,&uot; Brantley said.

&uot;I think he’s left us in good shape, and a lot of schools want to be where Fort Dale is in basketball,&uot; Johnson said.

In addition to have experience in Mantooth’s system as an assistant coach, Johnson also has a head start by being able to coach his junior varsity boys as they move up to high school.

&uot;That’ll help greatly,&uot; he said. &uot;The system will be pretty much the same, and it’s stuff that they know, so we won’t have to spend a lot of time on it.&uot;

Like Mantooth, Johnson will serve as coach for both the boys’ and girls’ teams.

&uot;He has the support of the faculty, staff and administration, and we encourage support from the community,&uot; Brantley said. &uot;We will miss coach Mantooth, but we’re excited to have William, and we look forward to the continuation of a very successful basketball program.&uot;