COACH'S CORNER: Travis Ford, janitors and Duck Dynasty
by Mike Wright, Cadiz Record Columnist
Mar 27, 2013 | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
This week’s column is about as mixed up as the weather. I mean, what is up Mother Nature? We had 70 plus degree-days in January and February and now it is snowing at the end of March. Kentucky weather. If you don’t like it hang around a day or so and it is bound to change. Hey, that is pretty much the same with coaches too on any level and any sport. If you don’t like one, hang around and there will probably be a change soon. Told you this was random week.

Speaking of change, I have seen a lot in my 30 years of teaching at Trigg County Schools. I have seen a lot of people come and go as well. Today I will quickly focus on just a few.

This first person was just a visitor to TCHS. It was none other than Travis Ford. I thought of Ford, who is now head coach at Oklahoma State University, while watching his team go down to Oregon in the NCAA tournament. The memory of Ford playing for Madisonville High against Trigg County came back to me. One of Coach George Radford’s teams which was led by Kim Mayes knocked off the high touted Ford and Madisonville. With just a couple of minutes left Ford sprained his ankle severely. As soon as the game was over or maybe even before the end, Coach Gary Siegmund and I had Ford in Sieg’s van and in Trigg County Hospital for X-Rays. Ford is probably on eof the best high school players to ever play in Wildcat Gym.

Continuing with my random lines of thought. I have seen several custodians come and go over the year. It used to seem like we would go through two or three a year in Wildcat Gym. I will never forget one meeting with a new custodian. Coach Radford and I had both been working late in the gym after practice and we just happened to be leaving the gym at the same time. As we walked up the steps and got to the top we were suddenly facing our latest greatest custodian. Maybe I should have said wackiest. Here’s why. As we got to the top of the steps by the lobby the custodian that we didn’t really know informed us that he was trained in the ancient martial art of Kenichewa or something to that effect. The aging, slumped, portly custodian looked right at Radford, broke down into a karate stance, let out a little karate yell, did a hand gyration and poked Radford in the chest and said the following. “You know that I could have pulled your heart right out of your chest just then, right?” The six foot two, two hundred and fifty pound Radford who was in top shape simply said something like, “Wow, that is really amazing. You are one dude.” (Please remember that former Principal Skip Pisa once said that Radford had the body of a Greek God.) By that I mean Radford wasn’t really worried about the karate but he and I both about cracked some ribs with the laughter that ensued a few moments later.

The last of my random thoughts for today. I am currently teaching a unit on South Africa. I was preparing the class yesterday for the following question, “What person do you think of when you hear the country South Africa mentioned?” Of course the most logical or popular answer would be Nelson Mandela. Anyway my sample and lead up question to that one was, “What important person to you think of when you think of the history of the United States?” The top five answers I got were George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Benjamin Franklin, Martin Luther King and Uncle Cy Robertson from Duck Dynasty. Don’t worry Mrs. Ethridge, I won’t tell who said the Robertson family and Uncle Cy. Anyway, George Washington was her first choice. Thanks for putting up with my random week.

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 jmcgill@cadizrecord.com.

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