Beck new head boys basketball coach at Carbon Hill

By JOHNATHAN BENTLEY, Eagle Sports Editor
Posted 7/1/16

CARBON HILL — Michael Beck’s first head coaching job resulted in a lengthy playoff run at Parrish High School.

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Beck new head boys basketball coach at Carbon Hill


CARBON HILL — Michael Beck’s first head coaching job resulted in a lengthy playoff run at Parrish High School.

He looks to have that same kind of impact as the new head boys basketball coach at Carbon Hill High School.

Beck, who was officially named head coach in mid-June, takes over for long-time coach Robert Epps, who took the head coaching position at Walker High School.

Beck, who has been out of coaching for three years, was looking to get back into the profession.

“I was waiting for the right job,” said Beck, who added that his new school is located a short drive from his home in Winfield. “This is the right fit for me. This is what I’ve been wanting to do for a good long while — ever since I left Parrish. The right job just never came open, until now.”

At Carbon Hill, he inherits a team two years removed from an area championship. The Bulldogs slumped to 10-17 last season, losing to Fayette County in the area tournament opener.

Beck got to Carbon Hill just in time to schedule several summer basketball play-dates. Due to the timing of the hire, Carbon Hill lined up against mostly larger schools — including Austin and Brewer.

“The main thing I wanted to do was see them run and down the floor. I wanted to see who is competitive. Sometimes in practice, you can’t tell. Some kids aren’t good practice players, but they are really good in games,” Beck said. “We’ve played some big schools. That’s going to help us in the long run, but then again, I got to see some things that I needed to see.”

At Parrish, Beck took a talented, but very young team, all the way to the championship game of the Northwest Regional Tournament in Hanceville in 2011.

The Tornadoes pulled off a pair of upsets down the stretch that season, beating Meek on the road in the sub-region and following with a 56-53 victory over defending regional champ R.A. Hubbard in their first game in Hanceville.

“The more we played, the better we did. At the end of the year, they started listening more. We had a very good team, but we were only seven deep,” Beck said.

Top-ranked Pickens County ended the Tornadoes’ season in the following game. Parrish finished the season 11-18 and Beck’s contract was not renewed at the end of the school year.

The next season, Beck served as the head girls coach at Clay-Chalkville, leading the team to a 17-10 mark. He then took teaching jobs at both Phillips-Bear Creek and Lynn.

Now Beck is ready to get to work at Carbon Hill.

The Bulldogs will compete in area play against Oakman, Hanceville and Vinemont for the 2016-17 season.

“I watched Oakman play against Winfield (last season). They are good. It should be very competitive,” said Beck, adding that there is plenty of work to be done before he settles on his JV and varsity squads.

“There could be some that didn’t get the call that we were having tryouts. I don’t want to close it off in the summer. When school starts back, we will reassess and look at it,” Beck said. “My philosophy changes with the group I have. I like to play defense, but I also like to get up and down the court. If my kids can’t do that, we will slow it down and do it a different way. My main philosophy is just to work hard, and that starts with me.”