McIntosh named latest Titan baseball coach

Published 7:34 pm Monday, July 31, 2023

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By Jay Spivey

For the Clemmons Courier

CLEMMONS — If there ever were a perfect candidate to take over as the head baseball coach at West Forsyth, it would be Kevin McIntosh.

Just three weeks removed from longtime Coach Brad Bullard resigning from the Titans, McIntosh was the perfect fit to assume Bullard’s former role in the dugout.

After all, McIntosh, 45, played baseball at West Forsyth with Coach Brian Holt until he graduated in 1996. McIntosh was then an assistant coach with Coach Randy Pope from 2001-13, where he coached Bullard when he was a player. Pope retired after the 2013 season, and McIntosh didn’t pursue the head coaching job, but he became an assistant athletic director there with former Athletic Director T.R. Richards.

“West Forsyth means a ton,” McIntosh said. “My mom and dad are graduates of West Forsyth. Me, both of my brothers are obviously (graduates). My son’s a senior at West Forsyth. My daughter will be a freshman at West Forsyth and on the dance team this year. You know, Tyler, my son, he films for the football team for the last three years on Friday nights and helped film for the baseball team this past spring for Coach Bullard.”

McIntosh left West Forsyth in 2015 to become the athletic director at Atkins High School. He left Atkins in 2019 to become the baseball coach at Mount Tabor High School, a position he held until 2022 with an overall record of 18-23. He resigned from Mount Tabor in 2022 and has been a PE teacher at Hanes Middle School since then. He will likely remain at Hanes unless a teaching position opens at West Forsyth between now and when school starts on Aug. 28. However, this past baseball season, he did assist Bullard, a very good friend.

“So, we’re involved,” McIntosh said. “My wife’s a graduate of West Forsyth. So, I guess you could say we bleed green, and we’re back to bleeding green.

“I bled maroon and gold (Atkins), then blue and gold (Mount Tabor), but I guess green and gold has always been the common color.”

In addition to McIntosh’s baseball-coaching experience, he was also the public-address announcer for home football games at West Forsyth, did some select basketball games, assisted some on the baseball team, and drove the activity bus for some of the various teams at the school.

“The primary reason, he was just the best person for the job,” Athletic Director Mike Pennington of West Forsyth said. “You know, you don’t see someone very often that’s got about 15 years in the sport. He’s been a head coach. He’s been an athletic director, so that’s a pretty unique combination, and then when you add to that, that the fact that he’s one of us. And that obviously adds to the equation.”

McIntosh needed a break from coaching and teaching high school. In 2020, COVID-19 hit, and in September 2021, he was in the school at Mount Tabor in September 2021 during a school shooting.

“I think one thing, if I could carry something over is just the fact that you’re always learning,” he said. “You always have to be open to change, and that was a big thing—being open to change, being open to learning, and having the ability to adapt and overcome sometimes on the fly. At my three years at Tabor, none of those were normal years, so to speak.”

Although he did help Bullard this past season, he’s one year removed from coaching full-time.

“Having a year off with no responsibilities short of helping Coach Bullard, and keeping a scorebook, or driving a bus, or throwing some batting practice when needed, you know, that was definitely a year that was needed for me,” McIntosh said. “And again, I went into it with a mindset that I wasn’t going to be coaching or doing anything baseball-related last spring.

“And I really appreciate Coach Bullard for reaching out, and he talked to me, and he talked to me, and I would never give him an answer.”

This past spring also allowed McIntosh to interact with the players, so he’s ahead of the game in that respect.

“Obviously, he knows West, he knows the (Central Piedmont 4-A) conference, but that gave our students and our parents a chance to get to know him,” Pennington said. “You know, if you’re old-school West Forsyth, you know Kevin, you know the McIntosh family. Some of our people aren’t, so I think it will make it a smooth and seamless transition.”

Since McIntosh and Bullard are such good friends, it’s become a running narrative between the two families.

“My wife will tell you, she was probably the last one to find out that I was going to help anybody,” McIntosh said. “She’ll tell you, she’ll say, ‘I was the last one to find out.’ And I’ll say, ‘You were, but then again, you probably weren’t.’ Her joke is, and Coach Bullard’s wife’s joke is, myself and Coach Bullard talk to each other more than we talk to them sometimes.

Although Bullard left, the building blocks are always there at West Forsyth for a very successful baseball team.”

“We’re hoping he can keep, and his desire is to keep the staff together,” Pennington said. “It’s a very good coaching staff. You know, Coach Bullard did a very good job, and he did a very good job of assembling a staff. And we think the plan is at this point for those guys to continue coaching. So, that’s an added plus of getting an experienced head coach, and to keep a very experienced staff, too. So, we’re very happy with the outcome.”

As far as on the field, when practice starts next February, West Forsyth finished this past season 19-9 overall and 10-4 in the Central Piedmont 4-A. West Forsyth defeated Davie County 5-4 in the conference-tournament championship and went on to play in the NCHSAA Class 4-A tournament. It defeated Charlotte Catholic 5-4 on May 9 but lost at Northwest Guilford 7-1 on May 12, ending its season.

“The CPC is, it’s as good a conference in the state,” McIntosh said. “And I would like to think and hope that the Titans will be, if not competing for a conference championship come May, year-in, year-out, and like I said earlier, put our best product on the field, and hope that the players can perform and do what they’re supposed to do, capable of doing it.”