Association Spotlight: Black History Month — Dave Smith


During the month of February, in honor of Black History Month, the NCHSAA website will feature information about African-Americans who have made major contributions to the great tradition of high school sports in our state. We hope you find these both entertaining and informative.


Dave Smith put together some powerhouse teams during a stellar coaching career.

A graduate of Tennessee State University, where he played football and baseball, Smith began his coaching career at P.S. Jones Senior High, the black school in the Washington area, from 1957 to ’68, where he coached football, basketball and tennis. He then coached at Washington from 1972 to 1991 after four years at the junior high level. His varsity men’s basketball coaching mark was an outstanding 520-233, and at one point his teams reeled off a 56-game win streak.

He coached future NBA star Dominique Willkins at Washington and guided his teams to nine conference championships, two state crowns and four state runner-up finishes.

Remarkably, he never missed a day in 34 years of teaching and coaching. He received an NCHSAA Distinguished Service Award in 91 and is a member of the Tennessee State University Football Hall of Fame.

Dave joined the North Carolina High School Athletic Association Hall of Fame in the class of 2004.