Coach Anthony Long gets the team set in the final minute vs. Winter Park (2011)
Following a 69-58 loss to Oak Ridge in the Regional Semifinal, Men's Basketball coach Anthony Long let the world know he is ready to move on after 15 years at the helm. Long complied nearly 500 career victories, including 332 at Dr. Phillips, and led the Panthers to the State Championship game three times (2007, 2010, 2011). Prior to his arrival at DP in 2002, Long won consecutive State Championships at Gainesville High and often cited his reason for leaving such a strong program was "It's DP...it's a household name."
Over the course of his tenure, the Panthers won 20 or more games for 13 straight seasons, extending the state's second-longest streak to 22 years. For the past two seasons, DP has finished their season with 19 victories. Many of Long's players have gone on to have extraordinary college careers, including Jason Rich (Florida State), who left as a top-ten all-time scorer for the Seminoles; Chris Warren, who starred at Ole Miss and currently plays in France, as well as Shane Larkin, who was drafted into the NBA and now stars in Spain. Staples to Coach Long's coaching style were discipline and conditioning. Rarely, if ever, was a DP team out-hustled on the floor and certainly they were never out-coached. He followed many John Wooden-esque philosophies over his career, where the details always matter in the big picture. The job was never without high expectations but Coach Long always embraced the pressure. It did not matter who was in the program or who left the program, DP's standards of excellence were uncompromising. Not only was Coach Long a tremendous coach for our kids, he was definitely a mentor to many of his younger coaches who have gone on to lead other programs statewide. Always approachable, always willing to help the media with a story, Coach Long loved his kids and his program and he always went above and beyond to provide them with the recognition they deserved.
One of the best coaches we have ever had at Dr. Phillips and certainly one of the most respected in coaching circles around the state and beyond. For more insight into his decision, please click here: http://www.orlandosentinel.com/sports/highschool/os-sp-hs-anthony-long-resigns-20170222-story.html