Ryan Fleming, a former coach in the Oak Hills High School program, was named The Summit Country Day School’s new varsity boys’ basketball head coach.
Summit Athletic Director Greg Dennis said that after an extensive search, Mr. Fleming was the right fit for the position.
“After looking at many good resumes and having interviews with good candidates, the committee thought Ryan was the best person for the job,” Mr. Dennis said. “He’s a winner and has a good Summit pedigree.”
Ryan’s grandfather, the late Thomas D. Fleming ’46; his great aunt and Thomas’ twin sister, Sister Rose Ann Fleming ’50 SNDdeN; his uncles Kevin ’83 and Michael ‘88; his aunts Molly ’82 and Mary ’85 all graduated from The Summit.
“The first thing that caught my attention when I saw the position open is that I’ve had a lot of family come through here,” Ryan said. “While I’m not an alumnus of Summit, I still have somewhat of a connection here.”
“Plus, it’s similar to what I’m used to,” he added. “It’s a smaller, private, Catholic school. Coming from where I came from, that is very important to me. The tradition of winning and competing is something that has been instilled in me and that is what Summit preaches.”
That pedigree also includes Dan, his father, who is a 1981 graduate of The Summit. Coached by the legendary Joe Cruse, Dan was a star player on one of Summit’s all-time great teams, the 1978-79 team. That team’s state tournament run ended in the state semifinals. After a distinguished high school career, Dan is one of three basketball players to have his jersey retired here at The Summit.
After a stellar playing career at Northern Kentucky University, Dan went into coaching, making his name at LaSalle.
“He (Dan) is an all-time great coach in Cincinnati,” Mr. Dennis said. “However, we are going to give Ryan the chance to write his own story.”
This is Ryan’s first high school head coaching job, making Summit the place where his head coaching story actually begins.
He said that a characteristic of the teams he’s coached in the past is their willingness to compete and play hard every day. That trait is something he sees in the athletes who attend The Summit.
“That’s what makes it such a great place to start (my head coaching career),” he said. “The Summit has kids who want to work, want to be pushed and want to win.”
Aside from meeting the student-athletes, Ryan has to fill out the remainder of his coaching staff. He plans to retain current coaches Scott Martin, Khiry Hankins and Kevin Johnson.
“I’ve known Scott for a long time, and I’m excited to get to know and work with Khiry and Kevin,” he said. “As far as the rest of the staff, I want to bring someone who cares about Summit, someone who will make this a top priority.”
Even though it is his first time being a head coach at the high school level, Ryan said he is more excited than nervous because he spends a lot of time on preparation.
He’s spent a few years coaching on the AAU circuit but put that on hold to fully commit and prepare for being a high school coach.
“He’s going to be a special head coach,” Dennis said. “He’s got a great career in front of him.”