Cutchins to continue Bronco basketball tradition

Published 11:02 am Friday, September 26, 2014

Left, new Franklin High School Head Basketball Coach Robby Cutchins and James Holemon, new JV basketball head coach and varsity assistant. -- CAIN MADDEN | THE TIDEWATER NEWS

Left, new Franklin High School Head Basketball Coach Robby Cutchins and James Holemon, new JV basketball head coach and varsity assistant. — CAIN MADDEN | THE TIDEWATER NEWS

FRANKLIN—As the former assistant coach, the new head coach for the Franklin High School Broncos basketball team isn’t really looking to change much.

Robby Cutchins has spent the last 10 years working with former Bronco Coach Danny Dillon, and going into his 11th season, Cutchins will be the head varsity coach.

“We are not trying to start over. We are not trying to build a program,” Cutchins said. “We are just looking to work off of the foundation that we have been building upon these last 10 years.”

That starts in the classroom, goes into helping the children become young men, and moves into the four quarters of a basketball game.

“What Coach Dillon did often went unseen,” Cutchins said. “What he did as far as reaching out to these kids and helping them improve in the game of life was just amazing. He is still involved in their lives. I look forward to continuing that tradition.”

And moving into Cutchins former position, head JV coach and assistant coach for the varsity team, will be James Holemon, who has been involved with the FHS football team as an assistant since 2008. Holemon also played basketball for the Broncos and is the all-time leading scorer in the program’s history.

“The first thing I am looking to do is just be the right-hand man for Coach Cutchins,” he said. “I’ll work hand in hand with him to contribute all I can to the program.

“The next thing is to continue to encourage the kids to do the right thing in the classroom, and also to represent the school in the right way on the basketball court.”

When Holemon completed college at Carson-Newman University in 2008 and moved back, he started out in financial sales and worked as an assistant under Head Football Coach Darren Parker. Then something changed.

“I actually spent more time helping the kids with their school work in study hall, and spent more time helping them with their SAT, ACT, and essays to get into college, than I was spending in financial services,” he said. “So it only made sense to get into education so that I could devote all of my time toward it.”

So Holemon got certified in business education, and will receive his Master’s in curriculum and instruction in the spring. He’s teaching at J.P. King Middle School, where some of his students will come from being that 8th graders are eligible for JV.

“I’m super excited about being able to work with the kids,” he said. “I’m super excited to be back in basketball to be honest with you.

“Once football season is over with, we are planning on jumping at basketball 100 miles per hours, and I’m looking forward to it.”

Cutchins, who is the president of Bobby’s Tire and Auto Care in Franklin, said Holemon’s being involved in the football program will be an asset, since many who play football also play basketball. And that will give him more time with the students.

And he said he has known Holemon since 1998, which was Cutchins’ senior year at Southampton High School. They played against one another and had respect for the other, and that’s built since they have been at FHS.

“Our knowledge of the game has only grown over the years,” Cutchins said. “The older you get, and the more you are around coaching, the more you learn. I think he will be a huge asset.”

Principal Travis Felts said he is very confident and excited about the future. With hiring these two, he can be confident that they will be successful based off their past experience with the school.

“I know winning is important to them, but they also know that there are other things that come first,” he said. “Sports at the high school level are an extension of the classroom. And they talk a lot about academics and how you represent the school. Those things that are very important to me — just as important as how they coach the x’s and o’s on the court.”