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Former Vance coach Keith Wilkes is Olympic High’s new football coach

By Langston Wertz Jr.
lwertz@charlotteobserver.com
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David T. Foster III - dtfoster@charlotteobserver.com
Former Vance and Winston-Salem Carver football coach Keith Wilkes will replace Barry Shuford at Olympic.

Olympic High athletics director Ken Konstanty had more than 40 candidates apply for the school’s football head-coaching job after longtime coach Barry Shuford resigned in December. Wednesday, Konstanty said he was “thrilled” to announce that former Vance and Winston-Salem Carver coach Keith Wilkes would replace Shuford at Olympic.

“We’re excited to get someone of a Shuford quality,” Konstanty said. “That’s what we were looking for. We’re confident coach Wilkes will be able to come in and our school won’t miss a bit. We’re hopeful he can take us to the next level.”

Konstanty said Wilkes will start working with the team this week. He likely won’t start working in the school until August.

Shuford had coached at Olympic since 2007. His 2013 team was 7-5. After going 4-7 in his first season, Shuford’s next six teams produced no losing seasons.

Wilkes was hired at Vance in January 2012 and coached the Cougars in the 2012-13 seasons. The 2012 Vance team was 9-4. Vance was 6-6 last season after a 4-1 start. The Cougars lost their final three games and four of their final five. Vance High AD Carlos Richardson told the Observer that Wilkes and the school had a “mutual decision” to part ways after the 2013 season. Wilkes resigned in November, shortly after Vance’s season was over.

Wilkes, part of the 2011 class of the Winston-Salem/Forysth County High School Sports Hall of Fame, built quite a tradition at Winston-Salem Carver.

During 1992-2007, his teams were 139-62-1 with 11 conference titles and state championships in 1998 and 2003. Wilkes was 9-21 at Shiloh High in Snellsville, Ga., for three seasons before resigning and eventually landing at Vance.

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