2018 All-Metro boys cross country Coach of the Year: Al Dodds, Centennial

For The Baltimore Sun

Dodds is usually a reserved and quiet man who doesn’t say much. But even he couldn’t resist a big smile when waiting for his team to receive the Class 3A state championship trophy at Hereford a few weeks ago.

What made this moment even sweeter is that Dodds was finally walking away after a long career. He retired from teaching four years ago but continued coaching track until last spring.

This, though, would be his final cross country team — and it made his last season a special one. His team wanted its coach to go out with a special prize, and the Eagles got their wish.

Centennial won easily that day. The Eagles scored a 39-point victory over Linganore and gave Dodds his third state title overall and the first in 25 years.

“It’s tremendous because state championships are hard to come by,” Dodds said that day. “We were second last year, and this was a good bunch of kids.”

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