|File photo by Larry Radloff, d3photography.com
David Hixon has coached 42 seasons at Amherst, but his 43rd will have to wait. The veteran coach of the Mammoths, a 1975 graduate of Amherst College, will take a sabbatical from the sidelines for the 2019-2020 season.
Amherst will be coached by Aaron Toomey, a three-time D3hoops.com All-America selection and the 2014 D3hoops.com men's basketball Player of the Year.
Hixon, who has won 826 games at the helm of his alma mater, hopes to take the year spending time with his father, and reconnecting with the game of basketball through Amherst graduates who are in the NBA and at NCAA Division I.
"I'm extremely blessed to have the opportunity to take a sabbatical year at this point in my career. The opportunity to see various NBA teams (with all of the Amherst connections we now have) a few D-I programs as well as having time to take care of some important personal matters.
"To help limit speculation I would like to say my health is great and that this is not retirement but a season-long sabbatical leave. I am further blessed to have an assistant like Aaron Toomey who is both ready and capable to coach this team to its potential."
The Mammoths, who won NCAA Division III national championships in 2007 and 2013, went 25-5 last season, posting their 28th consecutive winning season.
Hixon and his wife, Mass-Amherst diving coach Mandy Hixon, have two sons, Matthew and Michael. He and his father, former Andover High School coaching legend Wil Hixon, were inducted into the New England Basketball Hall of Fame in 2003.