Dawson County High School's Steve Sweat, who coached the Lady Tigers to a history-making, undefeated regular season in 2015, confirmed today that he will be retiring at the end of June.
"It's been a great ride," he said reflecting on his more than 30-year high school coaching career.
"It's just time."
Sweat said making the decision was one of the hardest tasks he's ever faced.
"I turned in my letter Monday. I had to have it in by the 31st, so you can see how hard it was for me," he said. "When I got back to my car, I thought to myself, ‘I just turned in a letter finalizing 32 years.'"
Retirement had been in the back of his mind for the last several months, especially after his wife Sandy didn't return to her teaching job last year.
"We always said that once one of us retired, then the other one probably was not going to work much longer," he said.
The couple also has an infant granddaughter and a grandson on the way that they want to watch grow up.
"I got to looking around and thinking about things that I had hoped to do in the future," he said. "But to do those things, I have to be retired."
Sweat spent 10 seasons as girls coach at Dawson County from 1984-94, before leading the West Hall High girls basketball program for 12 seasons.
In 2006, he returned to Dawson County, having transformed the women's basketball program one of the top in the region.
"Dawson County has been really good to me," he said.
For more, see next week's edition of the Dawson Community News.