by Aaron Garcia
Forest Hills High School athletics director Warren Taylor announced this week that Matt Sides will take over as the next Yellow Jackets varsity boys basketball coach beginning next season.
Sides, who spent the past four years as the coach at Anson, led the Bearcats to a 57-48 record in that span. Anson won the Southern Carolina 3A/4A conference title in 2010 and was runner-up to Sun Valley this season with a 19-8 record.
Sides, a Concord native, graduated from Mount Pleasant in 2000 before walking on to the basketball team at Furman University, from which he graduated in 2004. Sides then spent three years as a varsity assistant and head JV coach at Concord High before joining Anson.
Sides said the relationship he built with Taylor while facing the Yellow Jackets made the job intriguing when Taylor decided to step down from the position this spring.
“I was just very intrigued about the opportunity of working for (Taylor),” Sides said. “There are some great kids and some great talent at Forest Hills. All of those factors piqued my interest.”
Taylor, who will remain as Forest Hills’ athletics director, cited his team’s recent records as the reason for the change. Taylor, a 31-year coaching veteran, complied a 42-14 record from 2007-09, which included a Rocky River 1A/2A title in 2009. Since adding athletic director responsibilities in 2009-10, Taylor’s record was 43-34.
“I’ve questioned whether or not I’ve been able to devote enough time to off-season skill development and weight training, as increasing athletic directors duties have decreased time spent on basketball,” said Taylor.
“Matt is an excellent coach, motivator, and role model,” Taylor said. “His passion and energy are contagious. I have the utmost respect for Matt as a coach and as a great person. I am confident that he can and will take our basketball program to a level that time constraints would hinder me from achieving. Although I will miss coaching, this is a great hire for Forest Hills High School.”