Matt Goetsch is invested in the John A. Holmes High School boys’ basketball program.

In recent seasons, Goetsch has held coaching roles with the varsity and junior varsity teams.

He now moves over into the head coach’s seat for the varsity team next winter.

John A. Holmes High School announced Goetsch as the new varsity boys’ basketball coach on Wednesday.

Goetsch will take over the program from Robert Woodley, who stepped away from the program after leading the varsity team for the previous four seasons in his second stint in Edenton.

With Goetsch as the JV head coach, Edenton won seven conference championships during the past eight seasons.

During the same time, he also served as an assistant coach on the varsity team.

The high school noted that Goetsch brings with him a passion for the game and compassion for his players.

Goetsch answered questions provided by Adams Publishing Group on taking over the program.

Adams Publishing Group: What does it mean for you to become the varsity boys’ basketball coach at Edenton?

Goetsch: What a humbling opportunity this is to be entrusted with influencing and developing the men of the basketball program here in Edenton.

I cannot think of another group that I would rather be coaching than these guys. Our school, community, and athletic programs have set a high standard of excellence on and off the court that we hope the basketball program will live up to as well.

APG: How was it working alongside coach Woodley?

Goetsch: Abraham Lincoln is credited with saying, “I learn something from everyone I meet.”

While I’m not always that diligent, I can say that I have learned much from serving under Coach Woodley. His attention to detail, being one of the most profound.

The baseboards in the gym next year probably won’t be as clean as they have been the last four years, but they will be closer to the forefront of my mind from being around Coach Woodley.

APG: What did you learn during the last eight years coaching Edenton’s JV and varsity teams?

Goetsch: Eight years is a long time, so I hope I have learned more than just a few things; however, I will try to narrow it down to a couple.

The first thing that sticks out in my mind is a John Wooden quote, “It is amazing how much can be accomplished when no one is concerned who gets credit.”

While many people would say the basketball programs at JAH have accomplished much, the truth is, it is because of a team who has gotten over themselves.

This character trait is not only one we want to see in our teams, but also one I desire in my personal life as well.

If I had to pick just one other, it would have to be the importance of preparation.

My dad commented this quote when he saw the announcement, which if I remember correctly comes from Kevin Eastman, “Preparation is the unseen grind that produces the biggest plays under the brightest lights. Like an iceberg, the depth of your preparation is where your strength will come as you tackle challenges.”

APG: What is your background in basketball?

Goetsch: Originally from Pensacola, FL, I grew up playing all different sports.

I had the privilege of being a four-sport athlete in high school with basketball always being my passion.

Although I had many opportunities to play college basketball at various levels, I knew I wanted to be a coach someday, and my talent would only take me so far.

So, I wanted to play in college for a coach who not only knew my desire to be a coach, but also would take me under wing.

Who better than my dad to take on that role, who is the head basketball coach at Pensacola Christian College for the last 25+ years.

After playing four years and receiving my B.S. degree in Physical Education, I got married to my wife Kelli, and moved to her hometown in June 2012, ultimately landing a long-term subbing job at JAH teaching band and music, as well as, coaching basketball and cross country.

The music program is thankful that I am no longer serving in that capacity.

APG: What do you enjoy about coaching basketball?

Goetsch: Like Bobby Bowden (former FSU football coach) I feel I have been Called to Coach.

The thing I enjoy the most about coaching is the opportunity to carry out my purpose in life. Simon Sinek refers to this as your “why.” My “why” comes from the original meaning of the phrase ‘to coach.’

The first time the word ‘coach’ was used in the English language, was back in the 1500s, and it was used to refer to a particular type of carriage. I have three daughters (Alli,4; Mattie, 3; Emmie, 9 months) and have seen Cinderella more times than I care to admit. In that movie the pumpkin turns into a stageCOACH.

So, naturally the verb phrase ‘to coach’ someone meant “to carry a valued passenger from where they are, to where they want to be.” However, for some reason, over the years, the phrase has morphed into a phrase meaning “one who runs up and down a sideline and yells at players and officials.”

In my mind, the definition has not changed, and I use it as the foundation for my “why” in every area of my life. My “why” is “to carry valued passengers from where they are to where they want, or need to be; physically, mentally, and spiritually.”

What more valued passengers than the men that have been entrusted to the JAH basketball program?

I also believe it is my responsibility to carry them in three areas of their life.

Physically, which is what most view as my job. Mentally, which is the most over-talked about but under-taught aspect in coaching. And because of my faith, I hope through my example, to carry them Spiritually, as well.

This is what I enjoy most about coaching, fulfilling my life’s purpose.

APG: What do you believe is the potential of the program going forward?

Goetsch: We believe that the basketball potential for the program is on the upward trend, because of the great players who are a part of this program and allow us to coach them every day.

They are some of the most enjoyable athletes we have ever been around. However, the potential we hope our program possesses most is the ability to train and equip young men for life in whatever avenue they are called into.

Here at Edenton, we desire to teach basketball through life, and life through basketball.