MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCIV) - He's a man leading a group of Wando athletes into uncharted territory. Sixth-year head coach David Eaton is the young gun who has turned around the Wando program.
Now they're one game away from a state title on Friday.
Coach Eaton is this week's Athlete of the Week.
He's expecting the unexpected; young but poised; fiery but calm; a friend but a respected coach - the Wando Warriors have brought into Eaton. And he has guided them to the Promised Land.
"I've thought about it a lot. There's good mix of young guys and reserves. I knew this year or next we had a good chance, but it is something I've thought about," Eaton said.
Players have mentors, but so do coaches. It was Eaton's time as a player at Wofford that guides his coaching now at Wando.
"I've taken so much from him: work ethic as a player and I've turned that into work ethic as a coach. That guy works countless hours to figure the other team out and get his team ready. I run my practice like he runs his practice; I do things in a game like he does things in a game," said Wofford's Mike Young of Eaton's style.
The parallels between the two are endless, and that's a good thing for Wando.
"He's chasing his dream as I chased my dream a long, long time ago, and to see him success and do it the right way with great kids [is great]," Young said.
The compliments fly both directions for the two coaches.
"His attention to detail is unbelievable. I never went into one game unsure,; I try to do that also. We talk a lot. I say good game, he's very encouraging. Every time we win a big game, he says, 'Great job, Eaton. Keep doing what you're doing.' It's nice to have someone at that level encouraging you," Eaton said.
Now it's title time for both teams.
"He is a heck of a coach; he has put a lot of blood, sweat, and tears into that program. To see that work culminate in an appearance in Columbia is gratifying for a lot of us," Young said.
"He loves Wofford College. He's true to that school; that's what I've learned from him. I love Wando like that and I want to stay here and see where I can take this program," Eaton said.
The start of may be written Friday night.