Dearring gets his shot with ’Jacks’ hoop program
Longtime PG assistant wants to win ’on court, in the classroom’
WYE MILLS Joel Dearring is a patient man.
Dearring spent two decades as assistant men’s basketball coach for Prince George’s Community College legend John Wiley. Now that Wiley has retired, Dearring is branching out on his own as Chesapeake College’s new head men’s basketball coach.
"It’s a great opportunity for me and for any player who wants to participate in Chesapeake’s men’s basketball program," said Dearring. "We want to win not just on the court but also in the classroom."
Dearring’s dedication to those two goals is illustrated by the commitment he wants from his players.
"I’m going to ask my players for two things," said Dearring, who helped the Owls win a Region XX championship and advance to the national tournament in 2008. "I want a photo of them in the jersey of their four-year college and I want an invitation to their college graduation. We want players who want to move on and get a four-year college degree."
Dearring said Wiley’s retirement made him examine the direction he wanted his coaching career to take.
"I coached 20 years at Prince George’s under a great head coach. The training I had definitely prepared me to handle a JuCo program," said Dearring.
"Chesapeake has a great tradition," added Dearring, noting retired head coach John Mappas led the program to at least 20 wins in four of his seven years running the Skipjacks. "John Mappas is probably one of the few coaches in Maryland JuCo I could call at home to talk about the game. I’m just honored to sit in the seat that he sat in."
Mappas said the Skipjacks made a wise hiring decision.
"Joel’s very personable and gets along with his kids very well," said Mappas. "John (Wiley) was a great coach and Joel was right there with him. You could almost call them co-coaches. Joel recruited some awfully good kids."
The Skipjacks feel fortunate to have found a coach with Dearring’s experience to replace retired NBA veteran Reggie Williams, who resigned one season after succeeding Mappas as head coach.
"Joel is just ready to become a head coach," said Chesapeake College Athletic Director Frank Szymanski. "He knows Maryland JuCo and he understands what it takes to build a successful program. I’m glad we were able to land him."
Dearring’s coaching resume also includes head coaching stints in two high-powered leagues the Jabbo-Kenner College Summer League (1998-2002) and the Washington-Metro Midnight League (1995-1999). His Jabbo-Kenner squads made the playoffs each season while Dearring had an opportunity to both coach and mentor young adults in the nationally renowned Midnight League, which helps guide young men to college or employment.
Dearring said he views coaching as an outstanding mentoring opportunity.
"The main goal is for our players to get a college education," said Dearring. "Chesapeake is a wonderful institution with caring people. Any parent who sends their child to Chesapeake College to become part of our basketball program will know that they will leave better than when they got there and they will be able to handle any four-year college experience."
Dearring who earned an associate degree from PGCC and a Bachelor’s of Science in Broadcast Journalism from Bowie State College has extensive media experience. He spent four seasons hosting a sports talk show on the University of the District of Columbia radio station (WDCU) in addition to service as a WJLA-TV sports producer, Washington Post freelance sportswriter, and sports director for WOL-AM radio station in Washington, D.C.
Dearring had been a member of the Black Coaches and Administrators Association (BCA) for two decades and the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) for 15 years. He was an NABC Guardian of the Game Merit Award Recipient and has completed the NCAA/BCA Achieving Coaching Excellence Program the only assistant coach in the country to have completed that program.
Dearring will bring one former PGCC coach, lead assistant Allen Mitchell, who has been to three national JuCo tournaments with the Owls (twice as a player and once as an assistant coach). Another assistant, Wesley Sweet, was on the Owls' 2006 Region XX runner-up squad. Rounding out the staff is Kevin Buckner, who Dearring said brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the program.
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