Former Blue Devils’ assistant varsity boys’ basketball coach Brittain succeeds legend, Danny Anderson

Marcus Smith
Sports Editor

The Maiden Blue Devils’ varsity boys’ basketball team will be taken over by a familiar face for the 2019-20 season: Justin Brittain.

Following the Catawba County Board of Education’s approval, Maiden High School’s athletic director, Caine Houser, announced on Wednesday that Brittain would be promoted to lead the Blue Devils after legendary head coach, Danny Anderson’s resignation on May 23.

Anderson led the Blue Devils to the second round of the 2A state playoffs in the 2018-19 season where it would fall to Mountain Heritage in overtime, 74-69, after beating Newton-Conover, 51-37 in the first round.

That Blue Devils’ squad went 23-5 overall and 12-2 in the South Fork 2A conference, finishing behind East Lincoln.

Anderson decided to move on to South Caldwell’s boys’ basketball program to be closer to family and Brittain would be named interim head coach at the time.

“I can’t say enough how blessed I am to be named the head men’s basketball coach for Maiden High School,” said Brittain. “I’m looking forward to the opportunity to coach these young men and push them to be the best they can be on and off the court. Being a head coach is something I’ve always had a passion for and wanted to do since I was young.”

Brittain worked closely with Anderson to be groomed for this opportunity the last four years as his assistant coach. He has head coaching experience by leading the Blue Devils’ junior varsity boys’ program since his arrival in 2015. He has also served as a baseball and football assistant for two years.

“Coach Anderson- I can’t thank him enough over the years,” he said. “We have worked very closely together and he has became not only a great friend but someone I truly respect and admire.
“He has prepared me for opportunities like this just like he has done (for) so many other coaches over the years who have went on to have successful coaching careers...He will be missed greatly and has done a lot for Maiden basketball over the last few years. We look forward to continuing in the same direction.”

During his time as the JV boys’ basketball head coach, Brittain compiled a 44-11 record, showing his ability to lead a team. Brittain also works as a Physical Education and Health teacher at Maiden High School.

Brittain is no stranger to the Blue Devils as he was a graduate of Maiden High School, also attending East Burke High, where he was a three-sport athlete and earned All-Conference honors twice, as well as played on the 2006-07 NW 4A conference championship team at East Burke.

“Something about the game and coaching just drives me, whether it’s the relationships and bonds you build with your team or just seeing your players be successful,” said Brittain. “Maybe it’s just the competition, but I love it. With that being said, being a graduate of Maiden and having the opportunity to come back and be the head coach for a community that has always been so supportive is something special in (of) itself.”

Following his high school playing career, he went to Western Carolina University where he earned his Health and Physical Education degree in 2014.

Prior to taking the position at Maiden, Brittain spent one year at Perquimans Middle School where he was the boys’ head basketball coach, as well as football and baseball assistant.