Carroll County Sports HOF: Hyson remains leader of Eagles' wrestling flock

Contact ReporterCarroll County Times

Few people can boast the kind of wrestling credentials that Francis Scott Key High's Bill Hyson possesses.

Hyson is closing on 40 years as Eagles coach.

For that, and the rest of his distinguished coaching career — which includes 28 years as an assistant football coach, and five as the head coach — Hyson is being inducted into the Carroll County Sports Hall of Fame on Friday at Carroll Community College.

If that wasn't enough, Hyson, who has been a physical education teacher at FSK since 1977, also has coached girls lacrosse and baseball for a combined 10 years.

"I am a jack of all trades I guess," said Hyson, who also played three sports at the school in the early 1970s.

The Uniontown resident is not demonstrative as a rule, but it's clear that he is deeply moved by the honor.

"I was taken back by it," Hyson said. "With coaching, you just go and do your thing. People ask me, 'How many wins to do you have?'I have no idea. I am not into the personal stuff. It's flattering, but at the same time, I am not one to call attention to myself."

You can't talk about Hyson's years of coaching without mentioning his long list of wrestling achievements (his first year leading the Eagles' varsity squad was 1979). But it wasn't his primary goal to coach wrestling when he graduated from Frostburg State University.

"I envisioned myself as a football coach coming out of college," said Hyson, who played football and wrestled at Frostburg. "I wrestled for three years in college and they dropped the program my senior year. I played football for years. That's really where my thoughts were at the time."

This won't be his first hall of fame experience.

The Maryland Chapter of US Wrestling Hall of Fame inducted Hyson in 2012, and the following year he went into the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association Wrestling Hall of Fame.

Over the years at Key, Hyson has coached more than 100 wrestlers who qualified for the state wrestling tournament, with more than 50 of them placing in their respective weight classes. But what pleases him most about his coaching career?

"The number of wrestlers I have coached who have gotten involved at the rec or high school level," Hyson said.

Hyson coached FSK to a second-place finish in the state in 1980, and the Eagles placed second at the state dual-meet tourney in 1996.

But the year 1994 jumps out for him even more — that's the year the Eagles produced three state champions in Chris Beale, Randy Owings, and Zak Yinger.

"That was pretty special," recalled Hyson, who has coached 13 state champions all told.

The 61-year-old Hyson said two of his closest friends who are also wrestling coaches — North Hagerstown's Greg Slick and Smithsburg's Joe Dietrich— have motivated him to continue through what is now four decades.

"Both of them have been coaching longer than me," Hyson explained. "One of them [Slick] is a fraternity brother of mine. We kind of joke amongst each other about who is going to last the longest. You just don't see coaches staying with it.

"I realize I am getting close to the end, but I think I am good for a couple of more years."


If You Go

What: Carroll County Sports Hall of Fame ceremony

When: Friday night at 6

Where: Carroll Community College

Tickets: Call 410-259-0871 or 443-398-0139, or visit the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce, 9 E. Main St., No. 105, Westminster, 21157

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