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Jarvis Wilson, center, celebrated with his family the ceremony where he was named the new head coach of the Sparkman High girls basketball program. Wilson takes the position arriving from Carver High of Birmingham where won a Class 5A State Championship earlier this year. Photo Contributed

Jarvis Wilson Named Head Coach Of Sparkman Girls Basketball

HARVEST- After 20 years on the coaching staff including the last nine as head coach, Patrick Delay retired from coaching the girl’s basketball program at Sparkman High. In his place is Jarvis Wilson who was introduced as the new head coach at a ceremony held at the school.

Wilson comes to the Senators program from Carver High of Birmingham where he was head coach since 2014. While with the Rams’ program, he coached the girls team to a Class 5A state title in the recent 2020-2021 season with a 25-4 record. The 43-year old Wilson was head coach at Blount County for two years prior to being on the sidelines at Carver. In nine seasons as head coach he has been named ASWA Coach of the Year three times leading his squads to three Final-Four appearances, four Elite Eight spots along with seven Area Championships. He won 187 games at Carver.

“I love having a well-disciplined style of play, especially on defense, controlling the tempo and being structured,” said Wilson. “I love a detailed offense and defense. I want to control the offense and for my players to be comfortable with what we are doing.”

Delay was 226-67 as head coach of the Lady Senators having two Final Four appearances including a state runner-up. In 20 years at Sparkman, Delay saw 39 of his players sign college scholarships. His teams won three state titles among six Final Four looks. He was just the third head coach of the program since 1977 following Marvel Foard and June Seals.

“I have three children, ages 4, 7, and 9 and I need to spend more time with them,” said the 43-year old Delay who will remain as a math teacher at Sparkman. “I knew back in November at the start of the season I was going to leave. It was time.”

Wilson also has children, Kamaya, 13, and Khloe, 11. He and his wife of 16 years, Kimberly, will soon take up residence in Harvest.

Wilson’s self-proclaimed hobby is watching videos of basketball games and reading about the sport all in the effort of increasing the level of his craft.

The eldest of five children, Wilson was a multi-sport athlete at West Point High School in Mississippi, but he excelled in baseball earning an athletic scholarship to Stillman College where he became a three-time defensive Player of the Year from both as a centerfielder and as a pitcher.

As an adult, Wilson occasionally thinks back to when he was eight years old and nearly lost his life when he was ran over by a truck. “My father allowed me to go to a nearby grocery store and I tried crossing traffic, but was hit by a truck I didn’t see,” said Wilson. “I had no broken bones, but did have some internal injuries that soon healed.”

The outgoing and incoming coaches have conversed about the squad of Lady Senators at Sparkman who will returning next season. Wilson knows the history of the program as being one of the most successful and respected in Alabama. He once lost to Delay’s team in a matchup seven years ago and said, “It’s ironic I’m now coaching the program that once defeated me.”

Wilson’s discipline style of coaching also carries away from the court. He said, “I expect my players to carry themselves in the community with pride and to respect yourself.”

Wilson will teach physical education at Sparkman.

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