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October 15, 2012

HUNTER: 'You miss coaching?'

SELLERSBURG — In the last two weeks, I have been asked quite a few times if I miss coaching.

So I thought I would take some time to answer that question because some of you may be interested, and then again, many of you may not care one bit.

The short answer is “no,” I do not miss coaching high school basketball. The longer answer is a little more complicated.

What I don’t miss right now about coaching is basketball conditioning, rumors of players not playing, Saturday morning camps that I have to run, rumors of players doing poorly in class or out of school, ordering all of the preseason equipment you would need, rumors of the transfers of everyone at schools on your schedule, and just about everything that deals with preseason basketball.

The non-glamorous parts that are hugely important, people do not see and are part of the job.

What I do miss about coaching basketball so far is the camaraderie you develop with the players, the camaraderie of the coaches as we talk about how each of our teams will be terrible this season, the air of excitement that comes with a new season beginning and people putting expectations on you and your team (oops, wrong paragraph, this should be one up).

Why don’t I miss those above things?

So much time and effort and stress go into making sure all of that stuff is done correctly and brings respect to your program because you try to do things in a first-class manner. Some of the things mentioned are not in my control, which creates frustration because of the evaluation that will accompany coaching teenage boys.

Also, I have had more time to spend with my wife and kids, so far.

I have been named the Fellowship of Christian Athletes representative for Southeast Indiana and have enjoyed helping FCA.

I have been able to attend a few college football games without worrying about what needs to be done back home and when I need to get back to make sure the gym is covered.

I can walk out the door at 3:05 p.m. and not feel the burden of an entire community’s hopes and desires on the local team.

I am able to pick and choose what I do, when I do it and where I do it. I have been able to attend my classes stress free at Louisville Bible College, and not worry that I am missing junior high practices or elementary games.

Finally, I have gotten some great ideas from Silver Creek High School’s FCA Huddle Coach Bob Shaw and have tried to implement some of those things at Henryville High School.

I have had more time to deal with FCA at HHS and try to “coach” it as if it was boys’ varsity basketball. I am able to reach more students at HHS and throughout Southeast Indiana by doing that than I could coaching basketball which is the most important thing to me.

Oh my, so many things that make the decision not to coach make sense to me and reinforce that I did the right thing. That is … until the games start, then we are talking about a whole new (ahem) ballgame.

Perry Hunter is a Henryville High School teacher and a former coach of the school’s boys’ basketball team. You can visit his blog at coachperryhunter.blogspot.com.

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