High School Football: Newsome resigns at AL Brown
Published at 00:01 Friday 3 March 2023
CANNAPOLIS, — Mike Newsome announced his decision to step down as AL Brown head coach via social media on Thursday.
His last official day at AL Brown is June 30th.
AD Empsy Thompson said Newsome, a classroom science teacher, has now made the announcement to give the school ample time to find his successor as head of a famous program.
“Mike will be missed,” Thompson said. “He’s a really good coach, a really good teacher, just a really good man who really cared about the kids who played for him.”
Newsome informed Thompson of his decision on Monday. Newsome spoke to his coaching staff on Wednesday and shared with team members on Thursday before going public with his Twitter announcement.
With the late Ron Massey at the helm of the Wonders, Newsome came to Kannapolis with considerable hype and hope after leading Butler High at Matthews to an overwhelming success on the gridiron that included a 31-game win streak and a straight 4A status title .
Newsome was looking for a new challenge and a community obsessed with football. He found it.
“When I got to Kannapolis, I wanted it to be the last job I would have,” Newsome wrote. “I wanted to be in a place where football matters. The priority given to the football program makes this place special.”
Newsome’s win-loss record with the Wonders was 97-49, with half of his 12-season tenure at the 4A level.
There were four seasons with 10 or more wins. There were three conference championships.
His best season came on his debut in 2011. The Wonders, featuring talented players like Kalif Phillips and Damien Washington, tied 12-2 to reach the third round of the 3A State Playoffs.
In 2012 there was a 10-4 mark in 3A. 2015 saw a 10-3 4A season and 2017 saw a 10-3 3A season.
There was significant on-field success, including an eight-game winning streak against rivals Concord.
On the downside, the Wonders only made the third round of the playoffs twice during Newsome’s tenure. Those runs ended in losses to Charlotte Catholic in 2011 and 2012.
The Wonders have had their troubles in the 4A Greater Metro Conference for the past two seasons and were 6-5 with a one-sided first-round playoff miss in the 2022 Newsome Finals.
Football has been at the center of Newsome’s life for 45 years as a player and coach.
His resignation is basically a desire to spend more time with family. He sacrificed a lot of family things for football for a long time.
“Coaching is very fulfilling,” Newsome wrote. “I have loved being a part of the men’s team achievements and am very proud of all the individual achievements of current and former players. Coaching is also very hard. It has become a 365 days a year, 7 days a week, 24 hours a day job. It’s no longer just about knowing and understanding the X’s and O’s, it’s extremely challenging. There are trainers who have found out how to reduce the workload, but not with me. I was taught that hard work is the key to success, so all I know is how to “grin”. This “grind” has become a great sacrifice for my family. As a father and husband, I have missed practice and games, family trips, vacations, birthday parties and celebrations. I have tried to build teams around the priorities of the 4 F’s, Faith, Family, Future & Football. Unfortunately for my family, the demands of coaching make it difficult to make it a priority. It is time I started practicing what I preach.”
Newsome at one point left the door open to a return to the coaching ranks.
“I’m not ruling out being a coach again,” he said. “I might miss it so much that I can’t stay away. However, the plan is to try something different, mainly to be a better husband and father.”
Thompson said there was no rush to name a replacement for Newsome.
The focus is on a thorough search and finding the right person for a challenging task.