Rod Hairston, Winner of the Past Five Maryland 4-A Girls' Basketball Titles at Eleanor Roosevelt, Takes Job at Bishop McNamara

By Alan Goldenbach
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, May 23, 2009

Rod Hairston, who has coached Eleanor Roosevelt to the past five Maryland 4A girls' basketball titles, has resigned to take over at Bishop McNamara.

Roosevelt had never won a state title prior to Hairston's arrival in 1998, and had not even won a region title since 1987. Over the latter part of his tenure, though, Hairston cemented the Raiders' place as the area's most accomplished public school program.

Since the middle of the 2004-05 season, Roosevelt has won 114 of 122 games. With this year's title, Roosevelt became only the third school (Allegany boys' and Brooklyn Park girls') to win five straight basketball championships.

McNamara "is a better fit for what I'm trying to do: build a nationally ranked program for young ladies that are really into basketball," said Hairston, the 2006 All-Met Coach of the Year. "But the kids at Roosevelt are the main reason why I was there."

Hairston said his eight-member senior class that will graduate this year kept him at Roosevelt until now. He said he was offered the job at Riverdale Baptist after Diane Richardson departed in 2006, but he said he wanted a chance to coach the class that had just completed its freshman season.

"This was a time and opportunity that I felt I couldn't pass up this time," Hairston said. "I know that expectations are different in a private school than they are at a public school."

After going 16-13 last season, McNamara decided not to retain Rob Surratt, who went 114-43 in five seasons, including a Washington Catholic Athletic Conference title in 2007-08.

Walter Johnson Seeks Coach

Walter Johnson is accepting applications for its football coaching position. Tom Mulholland will not return after three seasons. The Wildcats broke the area's longest active losing streak at 36 games when they defeated Poolesville on Oct. 17, the program's first victory since the 2004 finale. . . .

George McClure is leaving as the C.H. Flowers boys' basketball coach to become the Suitland athletic director.

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