Head Coach Chad Sims:
Second-year man won region last year
and has come far from his Clearfield roots
By Bruce Smith
Last year’s victory by the Northridge Knights over the Weber Warriors was more than just a game for coach Chad Sims.
The win was also a championship. It was the first region title for Northridge since 2002 and a big change for a team that had just three victories the year before. For Sims, being able to cut down the nets in his first season here was a huge step.
“That has to be my coaching highlight,” Sims said. “To win it here was just really special. It was a great night and I’ll never forget it.”
There had been a lot of changes in the previous year and Sims felt he had to convince the non-believers. He was named head varsity basketball coach in May 2011, coming over from Davis and replacing Bryan Veazie.
Northridge’s administration was looking for a way to resurrect the basketball program, and the selection of Sims seemed like an easy transition. He grew up in northern Utah, was familiar with Region 1 basketball and had an impressive sports background.
The oldest of four children, Sims grew up in Syracuse, an area that was far more rural than it is now. At Clearfield High, he was a three-sport athlete. In football, he played running back and linebacker, anchoring the Falcons’ defense that shut out Davis and Bonneville in its final two games in 1992 to win the 4A title.
He called that feat his greatest sports memory. That year, Sims was one of seven Clearfield players to be named to the Deseret News’all-state team.
Clearfield coach Randy Johnson’s squad finished 11-2. Johnson described Sims this way:
“He always found a way to win.”
Wins didn’t come as often at Weber, where he spent seven years. However, in that time, the Warriors were competitive in Region 1, made the state tournament twice, and one year upset heavily favored Alta to advance to the second round.
“It was a great sports year for us at Clearfield,” Sims recalled. Ironically, that was also the year Northridge opened.
After graduation, spent a year playing football at Snow College and then went to Argentina on his LDS Church mission. When he returned, he enrolled at Weber State and walked on to play basketball. He also met his wife, Jodi.
“I played for coach Ron Abegglen,” he recalled. “I didn’t play much, but I learned a lot from him. I had some really good (coaching) influences growing up. I always knew I wanted to go into coaching.”
Sims got his first job back at Clearfield. He took the Weber position and also spent time assisting Davis coach Jay Welk, who is easily the “dean” of Region 1.
In a sense, Sims has come a full circle. Has anything changed?
“There is a lot more skill now in basketball because kids put a lot more time into it,” he said. “The game is also more physical than it has ever been.”
Sims has also changed. He has more basketball experience and a family. The Sims clan includes five children: Braden (14), Tanner (11), Colby (8), Hadley (4) and Tyler (1).