Hibberd hired to coach boys basketball at Cabell Midland
ONA -- Steve Hibberd knows what it is to win a state championship as an assistant coach and he'd like to experience that feeling many more times as a head coach.
Hibberd, hired Tuesday as the boys head basketball coach at Cabell Midland High School, was an assistant last season at Class AAA state champion Huntington High. A 1994 graduate of Vinson High School -- Vinson consolidated with Ceredo-Kenova and Buffalo-Wayne to form Spring Valley High School in 1998 -- Hibberd takes over a Knights team that went 5-19 last season.
"It's an opportunity," Hibberd said. "It's no secret Cabell Midland is the biggest school in West Virginia. I like the challenge of taking Cabell Midland where it needs to be."
Hibberd, 37, was an assistant to Ron Hess at Huntington High for one season. Before that, he coached a season at Fairland Middle School, five years at Stafford High School in Fredericksburg, Va., and three seasons at Fuquay Varina High School in Raleigh, N.C. Hibberd said he has been influenced by great coaches each place he's been.
"Gary Norris and Steve Morrison at Vinson taught me so much," Hibberd said. "Vinson is the model to go by. We might not do all the Xs and Os the same, but the way Vinson was run is the way to run a program."
Hibberd mentioned Stafford coach Steve Spicer, who also coached at West Virginia school Midland Trail, Hess and even former Vinson teammate Josh Perkey, the Vinson Middle School coach, as people who have influenced him.
"Coach Hess has forgotten more in 30 years than I'll ever know," Hibberd said. "He was a great mentor for me. It was a great opportunity to coach there last season. I have his blessing to take the Midland job."
Midland athletic director Chris Parsons said he is pleased with the hiring.
"We interviewed quite a few people, some good ones," Parsons said. "We think Steve is the one to take our basketball program the direction we want to go. He's been an assistant under some really good coaches. He comes highly recommended. We've heard nothing but good things. We're excited to have him."
Hibberd plans to meet with the Knights players and parents at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, in the cafeteria at CMHS. He has already contacted the coaches at Barboursville and Milton middle schools, feeder schools to Cabell Midland.
"Our next step is to get a good staff on board," Hibberd said. "And we want to get the youth program where it needs to be. Huntington has the YMCA programs. Milton and Barboursville don't have that."
Hibberd said he recognizes that the key to success is working hard during the offseason and once official practice starts, making the most of it.
"Our practices have to be harder than our games," Hibberd said. "Our competition is right down the street. That school up on the hill (Huntington High) knows that. Spring Valley, I played with their coach (Corey Maynard). We have to go head to head with those schools if we're going to get out of the region and play the Charleston teams or Washington or Beckley and other teams that make it to the state tournament. We have to be more competitive."
Competition begins in practice, Hibberd said.
"Being competitive breeds success," Hibberd said. "We always want to be competitive. We want our team to take that to the court."