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29 years coaching experience/ 7 years as a varsity boys' basketball coach, now assisting

Friday, May 24, 2013

Writing Hiatus...?


With what is going on in my professional life, I wonder if maybe I should stop writing weekly for the News and Tribune.  I will continue to write in my blog either way, so it isn't like I will stop with my ideas and I have enjoyed sharing my thoughts here.  I know some have enjoyed reading my thoughts and some, maybe not so much.  But I hope I was able to get across some ideas of mine to a larger audience.

I was asked to start submitting an article before the March 2, 2012 tornado that took out Henryville High School while I was inside, but it seemed to coincide with when I started this endeavor.  I hope most people understand how cathartic that was for me in being able to share my feelings during that difficult time and that we are so thankful to those who reached out.

Sports are important.  They teach us so much about how to deal with life, or at least they should.  Winning is important.  That is why they keep score, but I hope that I have gotten across my belief that there are more important things than winning.  There is teaching young men and women to be good, tough human beings.  As a leader, you must understand the influence you have.  All leaders will make mistakes and turn people away, but we need to understand that and try to be better.  It is amazing how many athletes were involved in the heroism of the tornado that went through our area, and how some of the injured have stated that it was the lessons learned in athletics that got them through their toughest time.

I hope I have gotten across many good things going on in different schools in the Clark and Floyd county areas.  If I didn't cover your school, it was because I hadn't gotten around to it, and maybe in the future, I can get to those schools I missed.

I hope that you understand that my faith in God and his Son, Jesus Christ, is what helps guide my life, every day.  I have struggled, as we all do, in living for Him, but it is the single most important relationship in my life.  That relationship has improved my relationship in my marriage, with my children, and hopefully with other people.  I would be remiss as a Christian if I didn't tell you to follow Jesus, but don't do it because I tell you to, research it.  I can tell you that by taking classes at Louisville Bible College, I am understanding how much I did not know until now.  But Google apologetics and see how science, logic, reason, and history can subside any doubts you might have.

Why am I stopping in the submission of weekly articles?  I have decided that it is time to get back into coaching.  I will not be a head coach, I have no desire for that right now and maybe never will again, but I do want to get back to being with a team on a daily basis.  I have accepted an offer to run the Silver Creek intramurals and helping head coach Brandon Hoffman in any capacity. I am a basketball coach, I figured that out this winter and I want to be back at it.  I live in Sellersburg, my kids go to Silver Creek schools, and I believe that Brandon Hoffman is as good of a young coach that there is, but more importantly, he is a good father, husband, and person.  He is worried about getting better and winning, but he cares about his players and wants them to be good people (I know many coaches want this also) which are all things that I support and want to help with.

I feel that if I continue to submit weekly articles that there will be perceived ulterior motives or questions about what I am writing and I don't want to put that added pressure on the News and Tribune or Coach Hoffman.  However, if you think I will completely shutup, you don't know me very well.  I will continue to post things on my blog and who knows, maybe I will submit an article from time to time if they will have it.

Thanks to Jon Reiter for saying something to former Sports Editor Matt Koesters about having me share my thoughts weekly in the paper.  Thanks to Greg Mengelt and Kevin Harris for allowing me to continue and for editing my writings when it wasn't apparent what I was trying to get across.

Finally, thanks to everyone who read my articles, both those for and against what I said.  So many people have been complimentary about my rambling ignorance, and for that I am thankful. Hopefully, I made you reflect and think and justified why you do what you do or think what you think.  That's all I was trying to do.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Oklahoma



It is amazing how what someone else goes through can bring back so many feelings.  The tornado that hit in Oklahoma did just that.  But not only that.  The images of children being pulled out of their school hit home even more that what was done that day here in Henryville, was the right decision made.  Send the students home, even if the sirens were going off in town.

Please, if you want to go and help, go.  They will find something for you to do.  If you want to donate money, the Red Cross is a great organization, but money or gift cards to specific people or to local churches will get help directly and quicker to people in need.  Do NOT send clothes at this time, but find a church or other organization and call ahead for what they may need.

Finally, pray.  I don't know, or really care, if you are a religious person or not, but it can't hurt to continually pray for these people...all of them.  Survivors, families, and first responders will be dealing with as much psychological stuff as well as physical problems.

Lord help us all as we deal/help with all of these things that keep occurring.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Tampa Bay Rays Reunite Military Family


If this doesn't get to you a little, you might have a problem.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Coaches are Guides, Motivators, Helpers, Parent Figures, But...



I have watched, recently, some young men working to improve themselves as basketball players.  And I have come to the conclusion that so much of what is done on the basketball court or baseball field or track field or softball field is done from the motivation of the coach, but even more so from inside the player.

Self-motivation is the only motivation that lasts.  It does help that these young men have been able to see improvement due to their hard work which helps self motivation.  But what is done or "given" in the sports world is due to each player's efforts.  However, working hard does NOT guarantee success or playing time, but it does guarantee you the opportunity that you would not have if you chose not to work hard.

Finally, being in the weight room, or on the court does not mean you working hard.  You must sweat, you must work, you must put effort into the time that you are putting in.  If you aren't, you might as well just stay home.

How do you instill that in your children?  I think some of it is genetic, but not allowing for excuses as a parent can help.  I think if a child complains about playing time as a parent, we should ask how much time and effort that child has put into the sport away from the organized practice time.  If they have put the time in, have they put in the absolute top effort?  If they have put in the time and the effort, then it might be time for an honest conversation about just not being better than others.  Unfortuantely, even for others that maybe don't put in the time or the effort.  It is all part of life, and as adults we see it often in the real world.

Dr. William Lane Craig





Friday, May 10, 2013

In One Household



There is a house in Clark County that holds 505 wins, 17 conferences championships, 10 sectional titles and one regional title.  What coach possibly has done all of this?  It isn't one coach, it is Jeff and Jenny Schroeder, the boys' baseball and girls' softball coaches at Henryville High School who happen to be married and live in the same house.

The baseball program at HHS was pretty good before Coach Schroeder (Jeff) took over the reigns with Terry Rademacher having some pretty good teams in the 1980's, however, Coach Schroeder's first season...not so good.  He went winless.  It has become almost comical because since then, Coach Schroeder has built one of the best baseball programs in the area.  His 21 year tenure at Henryville and Silver Creek going into this week has produced 371 wins, 10 conference championships, and 6 sectional championships.  What many people don't understand is when it comes to coaching baseball, a school is one coaching change away from being pretty good to not being very good at all.

Coach Schroeder has been courted by bigger schools, but he has had an understanding that where he was and what he built was as good as it gets, no matter school size.  Coach Schroeder's longevity and consistency has accounted for Henryville baseball to be synonymous with competitive and winning baseball.  Many coaches have come into the area especially in the Southern Athletic Conference and been told if they want to win, they must beat Jeff Schroeder and Henryville.  I can't think of any better compliment.  When he decides to step down as the baseball coach at Henryville, and who knows when that might be, he will leave the program better off than when he inherited it, influenced numerous young men in a positive manner and brought statewide respect to the baseball program from the little town in southeast Indiana.

The softball program at HHS before Coach Schroeder (Jenny) was not bad in the 1990's winning one, one class sectional title at Charlestown, but disappeared for a few years, as in didn't exist, and then after being resurrected started the climb to success.  When Coach Schroeder took over and the arrival of Amanda Embry, that climb became a quick, steep, incline.  Not only was Embry a great softball player, but those classes above her and with her were as good as any that have come through Henryville.  With the expert guidance of Coach Schroeder, Henryville softball has now become respected in the area and throughout the state.  Coach Schroeder in 7 years has won  134 games, 7 conference championships, 4 sectional championships, and one regional championship .  I will argue that there hasn't been a better softball program in the Clark/Floyd county area during her tenure as coach.  As good as, but not better and Coach Schroeder is respected by many of her peers in the coaching profession helping to get HHS softball players recognition it has never enjoyed before.  Again, when she decides to step down, the softball program will be in much better shape than when she inherited it.

Coaching spring sports has its unique challenges.  You try to coach and discipline a team and high school kids at the end of the school year.  If you have ever taught, you know that as the year winds down many students lose the motivation to be awake, much less be motivated for excellence.  What these two coaches have done is exceptional even if they weren't married.

What's more is that these two are not only great coaches, but even better teachers.  They are looked to by the staff and students as leaders in the building.  I have been around many teachers in my life and I will put their English/Literature and Calculus teaching skills up against anyone.  Former students come back and thank them for what they did for them as coaches, but also as teachers.  They have the personalites that students in today's world enjoy being around them and in their class and the students are learning skills beyond what the state standards mandate.  With all of that said as coaches and teachers the only thing missing from the resumes of these two is a state final appearance, and if they both stay in their respective sports long enough, it will happen, I have no doubt.

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Last night, we fed the boys' baseball team, the girls' tennis team and the softball team.  There were about 55 total players and coaches attending to eat the free food and to listen to yours truly speak about his faith. It is wonderful to see this student-athletes in a different light and have them show the appreciation for what is being done for them.