Black History Spotlight: James “Nate” Thompson

Published: Feb. 10, 2022 at 6:22 PM EST
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CONWAY, S.C. (WMBF) - Coaches are some of the most influential figures in our lives.

Our next Black History spotlight has made quite the impact on a number of men across the Grand Strand and the Pee Dee for the last four decades.

James “Nate” Thompson has been a staple in the coaching community, molding young men both on and off the football field.

After 15 years as an assistant at his alma mater, Conway High School, Thompson was in search of his first opportunity to be a varsity head coach.

Choppee High School in Georgetown came through and gave him his shot in 1998, however, there was one small issue. The school was set to be closed down in 2000.

Thompson still went through with it as the predominantly black school merged with a predominantly white school in Pleasant Hill to become what is now Carvers Bay High School.

What came next on the gridiron was quite remarkable.

Just two years after the schools merged, the Bears won the state championship. The first of two in Thompson’s time as head coach.

In his 20-year run in Georgetown County, he went 176-79 and missed the playoffs just three times. He sent 35 players off to play college football with five of those making the NFL such as Robert Geathers who played for 10 years with the Cincinnati Bengals.

Thompson was set to retire after the 2018 season, but he couldn’t stay away from the sidelines for too long.

He re-joined his alma mater in 2019 and currently serves as the defensive line coach molding the next generation of football stars at Conway High.

This past summer, Thompson saw his coaching career come full circle as he was enshrined into the South Carolina Athletic Coaches Association Hall of Fame.

James Thompson, we salute you as you are a true pillar in our community.

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