Longtime Midlands basketball coach taking AD job at another area high school

John Combs is getting out of coaching and into an administrative role.

The Westwood High School boys basketball coach will be the new athletic director at Spring Valley High. The move is expected to be approved at Tuesday’s Richland 2 school board meeting.

Combs replaces Jeff DiBattisto who announced earlier this year that he was stepping down at the end of the school year.

Spring Valley has more than 2,000 students and is in Class 5A, the state’s biggest classification.

Combs has been out at Westwood the past four seasons. The Redhawks went 12-15 this year and lost on a last-second shot to South Florence in the first round of the Class 4A playoffs.

Before Westwood, Combs was head coach at Ben Lippen and at Ridge View. He has a successful run at Ridge View, leading the Blazers to the playoffs in 10 of his 11 seasons there. Ridge View won two region titles and played for a state championship in 2011, losing to Irmo.

The Blazers made it to the Lower State semifinals in 2007 and 2013. Combs also spent one season as head coach at Silver Bluff and three years as an assistant at Spring Valley.

In addition to coaching, Combs is heavily involved with the South Carolina Basketball Coaches Association and with the organization’s hall of fame and North-South All-Star Game.

Midlands high school basketball openings

Boys Basketball

School — Former Coach — New Coach

Fairfield Central — Jonathan Durant — TBA

Heathwood Hall — Jeff Whalen — TBA

Pelion — David Smith — TBA

Swansea — Chris Register — Lamont Britt

Westwood — John Combs — TBA

White Knoll — Darrick Cureton — Willie Thomas

Girls Basketball

Blythewood — Steve Inabinet — Emily McElveen

Dutch Fork — Faye Norris — TBA

Northside Christian — Kristen Fortenberry — Jordan Leath