Hawes of Fame: Jeff Hawes Recognized as District Coach of the Year


Varsity boys basketball coach Jeff Hawes is recognized as the Potomac District Coach of the Year for the thirteenth time.

444 total victories, 14 District Championships, and 6 Regional Championships, and back-to-back state titles in 2010 and 2011; all of which are under Coach Jeff Hawes who has been with Potomac Falls for the twenty-five years the school has been open. 

Hawes and the team are fresh off winning another District title after defeating Stone Bridge at home Friday night 46-45. This makes the Panthers both regular season and tournament champions.

Hawes first discovered his passion for basketball at the age of five when he watched the late Dean Smith, former head basketball coach of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, coach basketball. “I wanted to be like Coach Smith, and I emulate a lot of things he did while coaching at UNC,” said Hawes. 

Hawes’ start of coaching began at Broad Run High School where he coached JV basketball for ten years. After his time spent at Broad Run, he started a new chapter coaching varsity boys basketball when Potomac Falls opened in 1997. Coach Hawes is the only varsity boys basketball coach in the history of PFHS. 

Hawes has won additional awards for his coaching such as the “District Coach of The Year” award twelve times previous to this year, “Region Coach of The Year” six times, “State Coach of The Year” twice, and was the 2010 Washington Post All Met Coach of The Year. 

When asked about his favorite part about coaching, Hawes narrows it down to the relationships he builds with the players, additional coaches, and everyone else involved in Panther basketball. “[Those are] Relationships that last a lifetime. I also love preparing and carrying out practices as well as preparing and competing in the games,” said Hawes.

Like any sports team, Potomac Falls varsity basketball has had their fair share of losses and wins. However, Hawes believes the reason they are continually successful is because of how the team takes everything seriously. “We have a family atmosphere and genuinely care about each other. We have a system that our players ‘buy into’ and work hard to understand their roles. Then they accept their role and do the very best they can at it,” said Hawes. 

Athletic Director, Mike Sipe, defines Hawes’ coaching style as “old school” rather than using a more modern techniques. “He holds his kids accountable. He has a great, positive culture coming from the program. That’s why they have the success they have,” said Sipe. 

As for the actual team, senior Kyle Ables values how Coach Hawes helps the team not only at practice or at games, but off the court. “He wants the best for everybody and he tries to just bond us together. He cares a lot about us,” said Ables.

“He’s all about family and bringing us all together. That’s really important and that’s why we’re on top,” said sophomore James Delaney. “[Coach Hawes has taught me] Even when you fail, your friends and family will always be there for you,” added Delaney. 

Coach Hawes has no doubt that he puts his all into coaching and making the team stronger every day that they practice together. “Everytime I walk out of the gym I take comfort in knowing I did everything possible to help our program succeed,” said Hawes. All the hard work from Coach Hawes and the team has sure paid off.