Freeman turns Rebels around



June 20, 2008|By ANDREW MASON

South Hagerstown coach Dwayne Freeman wants to see excellence in and out of the classroom from his track and field athletes.

"I'm all about academics," Freeman said. "But athletics are just as important. It's so important for South Hagerstown to have winning teams. It's about that school and about that community.

"It's about pride, and it's time to bring that back."

In his third season as coach this spring, Freeman guided the South boys team to its first title at the Washington County championships since 1970.

The Rebels also this season were champions of the Heurich Invitational at Smithsburg and the Zonis Invitational at Boonsboro.

Freeman is The Herald-Mail's All-Area and All-Washington County Boys Track & Field Coach of the Year.

Freeman, a 1988 graduate of South, was a three-sport star for the Rebels. In his senior track season, he won Maryland state titles in the 400, long jump and 4x400 relay and was the state runner-up in the 100. He graduated in 1993 from the University of Tennessee, where he played wide receiver for the Volunteers.


"I've had a pretty rewarding career," said Freeman, who lives in Hagerstown and works as a deputy sheriff in Frederick County. "For me at this point, I just want to bring the pride back to South High and give some kids the opportunity to excel and advance."

The South boys finished third in the county in each of his first two years as coach.

"Pretty typical of South, right in the middle of the county," Freeman said.

Now they're at the top for the first time in ages.

"I just wanted to get things turned around," Freeman said. "I had really no idea that we'd be able to get to this level so quickly."

But he knows there's still a lot of work to do to become a power in the region and state in Class 2A.

"We want to go beyond the county championships and be a regional and state contender. That's what our goals are in the future," he said. "And I want the girls team to improve, and we're showing improvement. I want them to be county contenders as well.

"I want us to be established and consistently good. When people hear of South Hagerstown, I want them to think about the track program."

Freeman wants a lot. But not more than he's willing to give.

"I need to keep this going," he said. "I'm here and I need to see this through."

The Herald-Mail Articles