Special to the Courier

Terry King is no stranger to Jefferson County basketball. As a former head or assistant coach at Southwestern High School and Madison high schools as well as Hanover College, the veteran has made his presence felt at nearly every school in the county.

Now, he can cross Shawe off his list as well.

King was announced as the new head girls basketball coach at Shawe Memorial on Wednesday, completing what turned out to be a short coaching search for the school. Zack Goodwin resigned as coach just last week and athletic director Steve Sims wasted little time in turning to King.

“We are very happy to have Terry King as our new girls basketball coach at Shawe. I have known Terry and his family from going to school with his daughter Courtney,” Sims said. “He was always involved at Pope John at Shawe even when coaching at other schools. I believe this could be a great thing for both coach King and for Shawe High School.”

King served as head girls basketball coach at Southwestern High School from 1981-87 where his team’s posted a 63-51 record. He then headed to Hanover College where he led the women’s program from 1990-92, going 9-31.

After a few years away from coaching to watch his daughter Courtney play at Shawe, King returned to the bench in 2009 when he served as an assistant coach to Tony Harl at Madison before serving as head junior high girls coach at Madison from 2012-14.

King considered himself retired from coaching but when the Shawe job opened, he knew that he wanted to give it a shot.

“It’s been a long time. I took an early retirement in 2010 and I’ve had some personal situations with losing my daughter and I just needed something to do,” said King of his daughter, who died in 2016 after suffering from health problems. “I saw (Shawe) was open and I talked to a few people and they called me and here we are.”

Shawe wasn’t expecting to have to need a new coach. Goodwin was hired just a year ago and went 7-18 in his lone season, which included a postseason win for the program for the second-straight year.

Although he has never coached at Shawe, King has always been around the program. Along with watching Courtney’s teams, King has often helped out with youth groups. And while he didn’t get a chance to see the Hilltoppers play last year, he is familiar with several of the players already.

“I’m optimistic. I didn’t see them play last year but I know some of these kids and I know who they are and I think they’re good kids,” King said. “They’ll work hard and that’s really all you can ask. If you do that, good things might happen.”

King takes over the Shawe program at a good time. The Hilltoppers are two years removed from their first winning season since 1994 and although numbers could be small this year, Shawe has built a strong junior high program which should start paying dividends in the next few years.

Of course King is no stranger to low numbers and said the key is for the players to not be fixated on how few people are sitting on the bench.

“I was in a situation at Hanover one year where we only had seven players and we were able to get through the season, thankfully, without any injuries,” King said. “That’s a key thing when you don’t have a lot of numbers, you can’t have any injuries. But I think these girls will play hard and that’s all that you can ask of them.”

Because of Goodwin’s late resignation, King essentially lost the entire summer to work with his team, never an ideal situation. He will meet the team for the first time on Monday at 5:45 p.m. at the school.

King is the second basketball coach that Shawe has hired in the past three weeks, joining former Indiana University standout Sherron Wilkerson who was hired to take over the boys program.

“We are excited to see the progress of both our boys and girls basketball programs,” Sims said. “This season should be a lot of fun on both sides with a lot of excitement.”