Bethlehem Christian Academy’s boys’ basketball team will have its fourth head coach in as many seasons for the 2021-22 campaign, but it’s a familiar face on campus.
The school has tapped Rusty Watson to take over the varsity program this season and recently made the official announcement. Watson was junior-varsity head coach and a varsity assistant last winter under Kevin Hall, who has since departed the school after going 9-12 in his only season with the Knights, who reached the state playoffs before a first-round loss at Bulloch Academy. He came to BCA during the 2019-20 school year, when he was head middle school boys’ basketball coach and led the Knights to an 18-2 finish, a region championship and a state title.
Watson, who is also currently the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach for the BCA varsity football team, began his coaching career at North Oconee in 2017 while still in college and also was part of the Titans’ basketball and baseball staffs.
“Through my assistant coaching last year, the boys and me have developed a special bond, and I am looking forward to what the future holds for our basketball program,” Watson said in a school news release. “I love the administration at BCA. (Athletic director Tim) Early and (BCA high school principal and assistant football coach Rod) Robinson have taken me under their leadership to mentor me and mold me into a great coach and leader. (Head of school Rhonda Whiting) has a great heart and vision for BCA, and I believe in her 100%.”
Watson, who said he’s had a love for all sports since a young age, graduated from Colquitt County High School and later graduated from Liberty University in 2018 with bachelor degrees in political science and history. He said his coaching philosophy at the helm of BCA will be “to build young men and to teach them how to handle adversity with great maturity.”
“I really look forward to working with these guys day in and day out, growing together during the work,” Watson said. “I believe hard work pays off; we just don’t always know when the hard work will pay off. I believe if we follow God, work hard, and keep growing then BCA basketball will be successful.”