Courtesy of Newberry Athletics – Link
Newberry, S.C. – There are many changes coming for the nationally prominent Newberry wrestling program. First, Cy Wainwright is stepping down from his position as head coach. Former assistant coach, Deral Brown, has been named as Wainwright’s successor and Assistant Coach, Bryant Blanton, has been promoted to Associate Head Coach.
Wainwright steps down as head coach after winning five consecutive conference championships. Wainwright, a heavyweight national champion for Newberry in 2009, will stay at Newberry as a professor and an Assistant to the Athletic Director. Following a prolonged battle with cancer, Cy’s wife Megan passed away on September 1, 2021. As Wainwright was both a head coach as well as a professor, he is stepping away in order to have time to focus on his two kids. “The reality of losing Megan means I have to concentrate on being the best Dad I can be,” said Wainwright. I need to be home for them, and am choosing to do that. I have enjoyed teaching three classes each semester since I’ve been head coach at Newberry, and I am flattered that President Scherrens and Dr. Sid Parrish have paved the way for me to continue to teach. I am also appreciative to Athletic Director Ralph Patterson for making a place for me in the athletic department. Obviously, I will stay connected to the wrestling program. I’m proud of the run we had while I was head coach, and I hope to watch Deral and Bryant and our wrestlers take it to another level.”
Deral Brown will take over the head coaching duties on October 1st. Brown returns to Newberry after a successful two year stint as head coach at King University. After a successful wrestling career at Newberry, Brown earned his degree in 2013. Brown was an assistant to Wainwright for one season in 2018-2019. “I am honored to be named as head coach for this storied program. Getting to coach at my alma mater is special, and I thank President Scherrens and Ralph Patterson for this phenomenal opportunity,” said Brown. “My first decision is to promote Bryant Blanton to Associate Head Coach. He won a national championship for Newberry at 184 pounds in 2010. He has helped Coach Wainwright every step of the way throughout Cy’s five consecutive conference championships seasons. My year as an assistant for Cy with Bryant was a great year for all of us and was a great year for our program. I have had two great years at King University and am proud of what the program there accomplished. My two years at King have prepare me for leading Newberry’s program. I can’t wait to get started,” stated Brown. Brown and Blanton are also connected in Newberry Wrestling history as well, with the two of sharing the top spot for career wins in program history.
“While I hate seeing Cy step down, I know the team will remain in capable hands, and I will do my part to add value to our wrestling program,” said Blanton.
Statement from Athletic Director Ralph Patterson: “As athletic director, I am first indebted to Cy for an amazing run as our head coach. Also amazing was the way he handled Megan’s illness and the challenges that accompanied it. He won a conference championship each year he has been our coach. Top that! I am proud of the institution’s decision to help Cy and his children by changing his role and keeping him here. Being a professor will allow Cy to continue to make a difference in the lives of our students, and his role with our department will be to teach life skills to our student-athletes and to work on special projects. He will stay busy as a professor and athletic administrator, but he will be able to be home to raise his children. I am very, very proud of Cy and am pleased to help him become an athletic administrator.
Deral’s year here in the 2018-2019 academic year with Cy and Bryant was a great one. Deral was rewarded by being named as head coach at King University (TN). Besides making a huge improvement with his team from year one to year two, he also was outstanding as a leader at King. He grew the program’s roster by recruiting high character people, The team GPA improved, retention improved, and he was appreciated by every department as a campus leader. He’s a special guy and I’m ecstatic in naming him as our coach. He helped recruit our juniors and seniors as an assistant to Cy, and he has coached against our sophomores, so he’s familiar with our team and the team is familiar with Deral.
We are fortunate to have Bryant Blanton in our program. His promotion to Associate Head Coach is a validation of our appreciation for his work and dedication. Bryant won a national championship for us in 2010 and has always had an important role here as a coach. He has also helped us as an assistant coach and equipment manager for our football program. Bryant has assisted Cy from day one and has helped us win championships.
As I approach my retirement, this is feel good story for me, and should be for everyone that loves Newberry College. We are appreciative and grateful for what our wrestling program has achieved under Cy’s tutelage, and we are pleased help him in his new responsibilities for his family and for Newberry College. We are excited to name Deral as our new head coach, and Bryant as Associate Head Coach. Our wrestling program is our most successful program. It feels great to know our program is in good hands with Deral and Bryant, and that Cy will be close by.”