Ties especially deep for FCS coach Brothers, RMA coach Dunn


Sports Writer

Thursday, January 10, 2019

There are few secrets between Rocky Mount Academy and Faith Christian School, two athletic programs tied by a knot nearly long enough to stretch from campus to campus.

Just ask FCS coach Rob Brothers and RMA coach Scott Dunn, whose basketball teams are set to face off at FCS Friday at 7:30 p.m., with the girls’ game slotted for 6:15 p.m.

Those two have been with their respective teams — FCS (10-4, 5-1) is currently first in the NCISAA 2-A Coastal while RMA (7-3, 4-1) is a half-game behind — for six years. Brothers was hired as the Patriots’ varsity coach the same year as Dunn was named head man for the Eagles, and they’ve coached against each other in two regular season games a year ever since.

But before that — 33 years before that — they were playing as teammates. Dunn graduated from RMA in 1987. Brothers finished up in 1986.

“We’ve been friends a long, long time,” Brothers said.

The pair is used to being on opposite sidelines now, but how was it when they first started as foils?

“It was a little weird, coaching against someone you went to school with,” Dunn said. “We’ve always had a good relationship — had some really good games. I expect the same thing will happen tomorrow night.”

The one season on varsity they shared came in 1986, when the Eagles made the state tournament for the first time in a long time, said Dunn, but were bounced in the first round.

Brothers was a small forward, while Dunn shared a position on the opposite wing as a shooting guard. Both had a nice shooting touch, each said of the other, but the 3-point line wasn’t added until Dunn’s senior season, so, Brothers recalled, he missed his chance by one year — not that he’s still bitter.

“I remember we had a real good team,” Dunn said. “A real successful season. It was an exciting time for us just because RMA hadn’t been in the state tournament for several years.”

Of course, the burning question remains: Who was the better player all those years ago?

“That’s a tough one,” Brothers said. “Scott was always in better physical shape. I’d say we we’re pretty even. We had better players than both us on the team, so our job was to feed the ball to them.”

Added Dunn, laughing: “I don’t even want to get into that. He would never pass me the ball, so I wouldn’t know.”