Tim Novotny wore a black and gold “Cavaliers” shirt and had a pencil tucked behind his right ear, smiling, as he took a seat at his desk Wednesday afternoon.
South Carroll’s athletic director was ready to get to work in his new role.
“This is definitely special,” said Novotny, a 2000 SC graduate. “I don’t think I’ve stopped smiling since I got the announcement that I’d be taking over. All former classmates, teammates, new friends via Facebook and everything, text messages I’ve been getting for the well wishes and good luck has been unbelievable.
“I’m definitely thankful for all the friends and family who have supported me to get here.”
Prior to taking on this new role, Novotny coached the Cavaliers’ boys soccer team for 11 years and taught a technology class at the school for two years.
Novotny had his sights set on becoming an athletic director when he was in high school and said it was something he always wanted to do — so much so that he predicted his future in a classroom exercise as a student at South Carroll in 1998. The class was assigned to write their own obituaries, Novotny said, and he wrote that he had been a coach, a teacher, and an AD.
Novotny served as a ball boy for the Cavaliers’ team in the early 90s when former SC coach Charlie Fazenbaker led the Cavs, and later played for Fazenbaker in high school.
“It was a lot of fun being on the sideline and I remember looking at those guys thinking they’re huge, they’re bigger than life,” Novotny said. “I wanted to be there and couldn’t wait to get to that spot.”
Novotny entered SC as a freshman in 1996 and played soccer and lacrosse prior to attending Community College of Baltimore County Catonsville, where he also played lacrosse. He took online classes via Frostburg State University to work toward a focus in recreation and sports management.
He was the general manager at Four Seasons Sports Complex in Hampstead for eight years and at Carroll Indoor Sports Center for five before landing a teaching position at South Carroll.
In transitioning to his new role as AD, Novotny said he received a lot of guidance from Jim Horn, who served as South Carroll’s AD from 2000 to 2019 and retired earlier this year.
Novotny, 38, officially started July 1, and said his first day was a little overwhelming, but not as bad as people might have expected. He set up his office, answered emails, organized his calendar with upcoming events, and took phone calls from other ADs in the area who extended their support.
Aug. 14 marks the first day of practice for fall high school sports, and Novotny said he is most looking forward to seeing the community’s interest unfold at the Cavaliers’ athletic events. He also wants to make a push to get local youth programs, such as Mount Airy Youth Athletic Association and Winfield Rec Council, involved as much as possible.
Novotny recalled a piece of advice Horn left him with — to remember that while his time coaching students might have come to an end, it didn’t mean he was done coaching for good.
Now, he will “coach” adults and other coaches throughout the sports seasons.
“Taking that mindset and molding some of the newer coaches we have on staff and helping them guide themselves and to look to some of the existing coaches that have been here for years will be huge for me,” Novotny said.
He referenced boys basketball coach Jim Carnes — Novotny called him “a legend” — and girls coach Jim Shea as people he plans to lean on in his new role.