PA’s beloved basketball coach of 25 years inducted into VHSL Hall of Fame

Avery Goodstine

PA girls basketball coach Darnell Dozier was unsuspectingly called to the gym by  the administrative team. “My team wasn’t practicing, so something was up,” he said. Before he got the chance to ask the girls what was going on, Principal Danny Little displayed to him the letter that had been awarded to the school recognizing Dozier as being inducted into the VHSL Hall of Fame.

“I may be the only hall of famer from this school and this area,” Dozier exclaimed. “It’s a really big honor for me, my teams through the years, and the administrators.”

Dozier has been at PA for his entire coaching career of 25 years and has witnessed many of his girls achieve many big goals. Seniors Jasha Clinton and Aziaha James have been rated the top 100th and 50th players in the country, respectively, and current WNBA player Elizabeth Williams’ jerseys and pictures can be seen displayed around the gym foyer.

“Most coaches focus on this win and then the next win,” said Dozier, “and mine started coming so fast. After the 20th year [of coaching] I was like, ‘This ought to be worth something.”’

Dozier is thankful his team was there to witness him receiving the award. “The girls were elated—some didn’t know what the hall of fame was,” he said with a laugh.

Dozier continued to explain how this has not only been a massive accomplishment for himself, but for his family as well.

“I went and picked up my daughter,” he said, “and she said, ‘Dad, you’re in the hall of fame! That’s a big honor, my teachers at school were talking about it!’”

Now that Dozier has been recognized in the VHSL Hall of Fame, his next step is to win the national championship, something that is “not a far fetched idea,” he admitted.

Dozier especially wants to say thank you to all of his current, and past players. “I love all of my girls from day one,” he said. “Our girls have made PA a national powerhouse in basketball.”

Dozier still keeps in contact with many of his previous players today. “I’ve heard from girls I haven’t heard from in years who live in other states,” he said. “That was a big thing for me.”

Everyone at PA is excited about Dozier’s big accomplishment.

“I am thankful that he is a coach who is more than just about basketball,” said Little. “He’s about life. Life lessons that he instills in his athletes and help become successful,” he continued.