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Former Eagle DuBose lands coaching job
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Former Georgia Southern basketball player Lee DuBose looks on during a timeout at Hanner Fieldhouse. The Jefferson native was an Georgia Southern assistant for two years under Rusty Cram. - photo by SCOTT BRYANT/file
    Growing up, everyone always told Lee DuBose she was destined to coach basketball. But DuBose, a coach’s daughter and a four-year letterwinner for Georgia Southern from 2003-2006, never gave much thought to all the talk.
    “It always came naturally to me, but I kind of rebelled from it for a little bit,” said the Jefferson native. “But eventually I chose early childhood education as a major and realized it was in my blood.”
    Her fate continues to take shape.
    She recently landed her first head coaching gig after spending the last two seasons as an assistant under GSU women’s coach Rusty Cram while pursuing her master’s degree. On Monday, she was officially hired to lead the varsity girls at soon-to-be Class AA’s Gordon Central High School in Calhoun. DuBose will also assist with the junior varsity softball team and teach kindergarten at W.L. Swain Elementary.
    “It’s time,” said Cram, who’s had more than 30 of his former student-athletes go into coaching. “I think this has been a huge six years for her. She loves Georgia Southern. It’s in her blood, and it’s always tough to leave for some people. I think she could have spent the rest of her life here.”
    With graduate school wrapping up, DuBose began searching for high school jobs and also contemplated playing professionally overseas. Despite her background, DuBose wondered if administrators would be reluctant to hire a 23-year-old head coach. She was thrilled when she learned she landed the position.
    “I was really just hoping someone would give me the chance because I know I’ll do a good job if I get the opportunity,” she said. “As much as I love the college game, I really love the teaching aspect that you get in high school. In college you get great athletes and put them in a position to win, but in high school you are teaching the fundamentals of how to play the game.”
    As a kid, DuBose never had to go too far for insight into the game — her father Bo is the longtime head boys coach at Jefferson High School, her alma mater.
    “When you grow up as a coach’s kid, you think like a coach,” DuBose said. “After every game I played he’s talking to me like a coach and kind of turning me into a coach on the floor.”
    She was drawn to Gordon Central partly because it reminded her of her high school. DuBose will also be closer to her hometown, which is about a two-hour drive from Calhoun.
    “It’s a small town and program that I feel like I can go in and have the chance to rebuild,” she said. “They’ve struggled a little bit in the past. It’ll be a challenge for me and will let me see where I am as far as coaching.”
    DuBose thinks the biggest test will be running the entire program, specifically the administrative duties, which include everything from budgeting to ordering uniforms. She’s already looked to her father for help.
    “He’s going to be a great resource for me,” she said.
    Along with her dad’s teachings, DuBose will also draw from the philosophies she’s learned from six years under Cram.
    “One of the things I respect most about coach Cram is his ability to teach you lessons you can apply once you are done playing basketball,” DuBose said. “He’s all about coaching basketball, but I feel like he really teaches you to grow up, handle your business and be responsible. I would like to do that with my kids as well.”
    Things could take an interesting twist this winter: If the standings play out just right, she might end up coaching against her youngest sister Mimi, a rising senior point guard at Jefferson, in the first round of the playoffs.
    “I think she’ll do a great job,” Cram said. “She knows the game, and she’s got a great personality. I think the kids she coaches are going to relate to her well. She’s just got to go through these first couple years of being a new head coach, something she’s never done before. She’ll have to juggle all the things that go along with that as well as teaching kindergarten. I think she’ll do wonderful and has a great career ahead of her.”

    Alex Pellegrino can be reached at (912) 489-9413.