Hickson, who has been the Yellow Jackets’ assistant coach for the past three years, was the head coach at Jonesville before the schools were consolidated in 2007.
“I am very humbled because this is where I graduated from,” Hickson said. “Being at Jonesville prepared me for this. I look forward to the opportunity and challenge.”
During his stint at Jonesville, Hickson’s teams reached the playoffs three times including one year as region champions. He was named Region Coach of the Year in 2004 and 2005.
“There are high expectations for him,” said Michael Massey, Union County athletic director. “Not only does he bring experience as a head coach, but he has a strong work ethic.”
Previous to being head coach at Jonesville, Hickson was also assistant basketball coach at Union County between 1997 and 2003. During that time the Yellow Jackets made the playoffs four times and were regions champs three times. Hickson, who earned a Bachelor of Science degree in elementary education from Limestone College, volunteered his time to the Union County basketball team for two years while finishing up his degree.
Hickson said he looks forward to taking over the team and putting his personal touches on the team.
“I like to push the ball up the court and set a pressure defense,” Hickson said. “I am already familiar with the kids and the personnel we have. Desmond Floyd will be key for us.”
The Yellow Jackets begin summer basketball June 1. The team will scrimmage June 5 against Clover.
“I will spend next week evaluating the team before we get to work,” Hickson said. “We are going to be a hard-working, blue collar team.”
Hickson replaces Pitt, who was forced into retirement after 22 years due to budget cuts.
“Coming behind someone that has won more than 500 games is hard to follow, but it is an honor,” Hickson said. “They are big footsteps to follow, but being with him for nine years, I owe him a lot.”
Hickson, a math teacher at Union County Achievement Academy, is also the recruitment coordinator for the Yellow Jackets’ football team and head coach of Union County’s Ninth Grade Football team.
“Will demands a lot out of his players,” Massey said. “From the opening tip-off to the final buzzer, he demands effort during the entire game.”
While Hickson said his goal for the team is a state championship, there are also life lesson’s he wants his players to learn.
“I want my kids to enjoy it. It is a game, so don’t take it too seriously. But we do want to win every game,” he said. “We would love to walk out with a state championship, but we also want to enjoy the experience and learn from the wins and losses.”