Coach Doug Mitchell was named Coach E’s Corner coach of the week in a March 11, 2011, article after his North Central High School Panthers basketball team completed back to back Sectional and Regional championship wins at Hinkle Fieldhouse.
On Saturday Jan. 14, Mitchell led his 11-4 Panthers team to its fourth Marion County Tournament championship in five years with a 65-61 victory over Ben Davis High School. The Panthers were led by Purdue recruit and Mr. Basketball candidate Ronnie Johnson’s 27 points.
In his 18 years as coach at North Central, Mitchell has had more than 40 of his players go on to compete in the NCAA and in 2008 was appointed as the head coach for USA Basketball.
In 2007, Mitchell served as the Nike Hoop Summit assistant coach, helping the USA team to a 100-80 win over the World Select Team.
Additionally, Mitchell was an assistant coach at the 2003 and 2005 USA Basketball Men’s Youth Development Festivals. In 2005, he helped USA garner a 5-0 record and gold medal, and in 2003 he assisted USA North in winning a silver medal.
Game to see:
Jan 24: Ben Davis at Lawrence Central
The 9-4 Ben Davis Giants are a much improved basketball team under first year coach Mark James. The 2011-12 Giants team has taken a page from the 2011 Giants football team; they are a physically tough team and try to beat you up with their size and strength. They remind me a lot of Tom Izzo’s Michigan State basketball teams.
The Giants are led by 6-4 junior Tony Willis and 6-10 senior Brennan Gillis.
The talented 7-3 Lawrence Central Bears are coming off a 69-55 loss to North Central (at the Marion County Tournament), as they look to rebound from the tournament, they will need to be strong on the defensive boards against the Giants and play with a little more passion. The Bears are led by Indiana University recruit Jeremy Hollowell.
Jan 21: North Central at Lawrence North
The No. 6 ranked 14-3 Lady Panthers will be tested against the 12-3 Lady Wildcats. The North Central Panthers are led by Celeste Edwards, Erin Taylor and Rachael Gregory (all three combined to score 47 points in a recent game against Decatur Central). The Panthers are looking for a strong finish to the regular season to prepare them for tournament play.
The Lady Wildcats are led by senior Annesia Moore and sophomore guard and playmaker Ana Owens.