Somewhere shortly before Christmas Millard and Jerri Grifin would always hosts the inner circle of Trigg County Basketball for a Christmas Dinner. There were former coaches, current coaches, future coaches, administrators, athletic directors, bookkeepers and long time fans. Mrs. Jeri must have been a world class cook because she filled their house with food. If memory serves me well food spilled over from the kitchen into the family room. Tables were adorned with food. Food, however, was secondary to the basketball talk.
After dinner all the men would retreat to a small cramped little room off the kitchen. A freezer filled half the room. It was there that Millard Griffin, Jack Frost Turner, Jim Wallace, George Radford, Skip Pisa, Ray Maggard, Billie Stallons, Buddy Perry, Arnie Oaken and others would discuss, argue and swap stories until late in the night. I was there also but I tried to concentrate on listening more than talking. (believe it or not) I wanted to commit the stories to memory so I could pass them along to future generations. Trust me I remember them all. Finally someone’s wife would wander down to the inner sanctum and say, “Honey don’t you think we need to be going home.” The husband would frown, rise and put in his two cents worth on whatever the topic was as he exited the room. I made sure that I was always one of the last to leave, for I didn’t want to miss anything.
Oh to hear those voices again. How I wish I had taped their discussions on the history of Trigg County basketball. Just one more time I would like to listen to the argument on who is the best ever. I would like to hear their stories about Ralph Beard or King Kelly Coleman once again. You know, I just had an idea. Maybe I can. I will get back to you on this one.
Coach Maggard and Paducah Tilghman
My basketball team’s victory over Paducah Tilghman this past Saturday night brought back memories. It was the first win over Tilghman in school history. Back in the winter of 1984 I was in my first season as a coach at Trigg County. Ray Maggard was head coach and I was his young fired up assistant. We traveled to play the powerful Blue Tornado of Paducah Tilghman. It was the middle of the third quarter and Tilghman was up by 35 points. Coach Maggard instructed our team to go into a stall. Being young and eternally optimistic, I told Coach Maggard that we would never catch them like that. He replied, “I am not tying to catch them. I am just trying to keep from being beat by 60.”
Trigg County Hall of Fame Class of 2012
Our Hall of Fame selection committee will be releasing the Class of 2012 inductees very soon. The new members will be introduced at the Trigg-Christian basketball game on January 27th and the banquet will be on January the 28th. It should be a great class. Make sure you get your tickets early for a great celebration.
Enthusiasm Makes the Difference
Mike Wright is the head coach of boys basketball and cross country at Trigg County High School. Emails concerning Coach’s Corner can be sent to email@example.com.