May 15, 2012
Panther Creek High School now knows who will lead the athletic program next year.
Former boys basketball coach L.J. Hepp has been named the next athletic director at Panther Creek, replacing Todd Schuler who will assume the same position at Cardinal Gibbons.
Hepp's new job will be effective July 2.
"An outstanding athletics program is crucial to a vibrant, successful high school and helps to create school and community spirit," Panther Creek Principal Rodney Nelson said. "L.J. Hepp's educational background, his successful experiences in high-performing and large organizations, and his relationship and commitment to Panther Creek make him an ideal leader for our athletics program."
Hepp was a member of the first Panther Creek faculty when the school opened in 2006. He taught business education, physical education and healthful living, and also coordinated online learning. Currently, he is the coordinator of the Alternative Learning Center.
While teaching, Hepp also served as the first boys basketball coach. In his second season, he won the schools first conference championship in any sport. In his third year as head coach, the team compiled a 28-3 record and made an appearance in the 4-A Eastern Regional.
Hepp was named the 2009 Tri-8 Conference Coach of the Year and the NC District 5 Coach of the Year.
"I love Panther Creek. I have great memories here," Hepp said. "I have a high level of respect for our administration and what they stand for."
Following the 2009 season, Hepp left Panther Creek to take over as the Director of Basketball Operations at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, S.C.
After one season with the Gamecocks, Hepp was named the head coach of the Oita Heat Devils, a professional basketball team in Japan.
Prior to his arrival at Panther Creek in 2006, Hepp was a graduate assistant for the men's basketball team at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, and was also on the men's basketball staff at Stanford University.
"Coach Hepp will be instrumental in ensuring that Panther Creek's student-athletes and coaches are well equipped and well prepared for academic and athletic successes," Nelson said.
"His direct involvement with some of our nation's most prestigious academic and athletic programs assures me that he is very well prepared for his new role."
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