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Growing up in Reidsville, Que Tucker wasn't afraid to dream, but she had no idea what she would accomplish.

Tucker reached a new height in her career on Wednesday when she was named deputy executive director for the N.C. High School Athletic Association. She will replace deputy executive director Dick Knox when he retires in December.The deputy executive director oversees the association's 21-sport program and handles the officiating program.

Tucker, 52, joined the association in 1991 and handles the Student Services Program as an associate executive director.

"I pledge to do the best I can," Tucker told the board of directors during its Wednesday meeting. "I don't think you replace Dick. I think at the association it's a team effort. ... I bring to this point my enthusiasm, my commitment to work hard and the desire to help young boys and girls in athletics be the best they can be."

Tucker played basketball at Mars Hill, graduating in 1974. She earned her master's degree in physical education from UNCG and served as a volleyball and basketball assistant coach there. She coached volleyball and basketball at Reidsville from 1978 through '88.

"She knows the program, she has the confidence of the staff, she's worked at different levels," said Charlie Adams, the association's executive director. "She's been a player, coach, official. She has run a premier program at Student Services that has received national attention."

Tucker is the first African American and female to serve as deputy executive director.

In other developments, the board:

* Supported the realignment committee's decision to have more split conferences so schools would pay less to travel and students would miss less class time. But the board, which based its rationale on the 2001 guidelines, did not approve the committee's decision to let some schools play the next highest classification.

*Decided to give the best two-of-three regional baseball championship competition a two-year run, starting this season.

*Tweaked the writing on one of its residence rules to prohibit students from transfering to another school to play a sport during that sport's season. The exception would be in the event of a genuine change in residence of the parent(s) or legal custodian.

Around town: Northwest Guilford has hired Michael Everett as its new boys basketball coach. Everett, a former assistant coach at High Point University, coached at Southeast Guilford for the past two seasons. He will replace former Vikings coach Anthony Long, who stepped down so he could spend more time with family.

"Mike is a very enthusiastic coach," Northwest athletics director John Hughes said. "He's very knowledgeable about the game. ... It's going to be a good fit. Coach Long did a good job for us in the last few years, but this is a fresh, new start."

At Eastern Guilford, athletics director Leigh Hebbard announced Wednesday that Jason Gibbs will take over for former football coach Glenn Locklear, who resigned after the 2003 season (*see correction*).

Gibbs, a former offensive coordinator for Western Guilford and recently arena football's Greensboro Prowlers, will be Eastern's fifth football coach in 11 seasons (*see correction*).

"I just think it's the change he's going to bring to the program," Hebbard said. "Just a new look to the program, a different philosophy from what we've had for a while. It's going to be more fun for the kids playing football."

\ Contact Kellie Dixon at 883-4422, ext. 229, or

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