Sampson Independent

Lewis voted into Hall of Fame

Legendary Clinton football head coach Bob Lewis will be inducted into the North Carolina High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA) Hall of Fame, the organization has announced. Lewis will be a part of the 2018 Class — the 32nd overall — and the ceremony honoring the inductees will be held Saturday, April 13, 2019, at the Embassy Suites in Cary.

Lewis’ career spanned five different schools across 41 years of coaching. He recorded his first state title with East Bladen in 1973 when the Eagles won a share of the 3A State Football Championship. Lewis later departed East Bladen and went on to also serve stints at Pender, Whiteville, Harrells Christian and Clinton.

At Clinton alone, Lewis led the Dark Horses to four state championship crowns and six state championship appearances.

While at Harrells, he also won an eight-man football N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association state title in 2005.

Other NCHSAA Hall of Fame inductees include:

• Jim Brett — Tarboro — Former head football coach at Tarboro, West Brunswick, and Northern Nash.

Marsha Crump — Hickory — Head women’s basketball coach at Freedom from 1970-2002.

Charles A. McCullough, Sr. — Charlotte — Former head basketball coach at alma mater West Charlotte for 33 seasons.

D. Gordon Patrick — Morehead City — Head wrestling coach at West Carteret from 1965-1984. Spent seven years as West Carteret’s head football coach.

Phillip “Marc” Payne — West Jefferson — Head basketball coach at Beaver Creek, Watauga and Ashe County for a combined 37 years.

Robert “Bobby” Poss — Asheville — Coached football at Seventy-First, Apex, South View, and A.C. Reynolds

Colon Starrett – Thomasville — Spent 30 years as a basketball official between high school and college. Officiated 10 NCHSAA state championship games.

Lewis officially announced his retirement in January, with county athletic director Al Britt singing his praises.

“He is certainly a legend, not just in Sampson County, but in all of North Carolina,” Britt said in an interview with the Independent back in February.

Lewis’ comments on the reaction of his retirement also speak to the sentiment of just how humble of a man he is.

“People are making way too much of this,” he remarked. “I felt that this was the time for me to do this. I have had a great career and, at the same time, I’ve had a lot of fun doing it.”

Bob Lewis patrols the sidelines. Lewis patrols the sidelines. File Photo | Sampson Independent
Bob Lewis hoisted after winning 1997 State Football Championship with the Dark Horses. Lewis hoisted after winning 1997 State Football Championship with the Dark Horses. File Photo | Sampson Independent
Bob Lewis famously directs his team from the sidelines. Lewis famously directs his team from the sidelines. File Photo | Sampson Independent
Clinton legend to be inducted by NCHSAA in April 2019

By Daron Barefoot

Sports Editor

Reach Sports Editor Daron Barefoot at