Matt Morin has resigned as the head boys' basketball coach at the Heights, effective at the end of the season, so he can start the boys' basketball program at the Avalon School, a private school in Montgomery County that will open next fall.

Morin, who has led the Cavaliers for six years, was intrigued by the possibility of starting a program from scratch, especially at a school created by Richard McPherson, a former headmaster at the Heights.

"The main reason I'm leaving is because of the admiration I have for Rich McPherson and his leadership style," Morin said. "He's going to create an outstanding school for men, and I wanted to be a part of it."

The Avalon School will open with grades 3 through 9 next fall and add 10th, 11th and 12 grades in the following three years. It will start out as an all-boys school.

Morin, 33, is a 1992 graduate of the University of Maryland, where he served as a manager for the men's basketball team during Coach Gary Williams's first three seasons. He then served as an assistant for Coach Mike Lonergan at Catholic University before taking over at the Heights. With the Cavaliers, Morin has compiled a 96-71 record, including 24-7 in the 1997-98 season.

The Heights is 9-4 under Morin this season.