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Sunday, November 04, 2007

I am back in the saddle again. After laying off for a few years I am coaching basketball again. This time for a school. I am not used to all of the red tape that it takes to coach for a public school. I organized and started a peewee football program and a youth basketball program. Plus I did some AAU basketball. But these were all not connected directly with any school. There were a few forms to fill out, but after that you were able to concentrate on the team.

Not so easy with the school. A background check and fingerprints. CPR course - it had been 20 years since my first red cross course so it was time for a refresher. A "Pupil Activity Course" - it had some good stuff about concussions and injuries that I paid close attention to; every season there are at least a few sprains or hard falls. Still have to fill out some forms for the office. That takes care of me, then the parents and kids have to sign umpteen documents and return them. Next year I will have to hire a secretary....

The team is vertically challenged. But they are athletic and are competitive. They work hard and most of all they have fun on the court. So far no prima donna's or drama queens. We are really focusing on defense. We will need a tough defense to offset our lack of height.
What a season for the Panthers. I am sure that the seniors must have thought they they would never see a victory after going 0-10 their Freshman and Sophomore years. The team went 2-8 last season, and completed this season at 7-3. South's first winning season in like 5-6 years. Something that the seniors can be proud of. They can look back and say that we were the team that turned the program around and regained respectability.
They proved me wrong, my personal thoughts at the start of the season was that the team would go 5-5. Good thing that I am not in Vegas....

The last game was tough it was pretty even going into the last quarter, then Ansonia ran away with the ball game. According to my son it was emotional as the team gathered together for one last huddle. I hope that the underclassmen reflect back on the season, the emotions of that moment and resolve to do even better next year. We will be light on seniors and so the juniors and sophomores will have to step up even more to carry the team forward. Will South be a flash in the pan - a one season wonder, or is this the return of South to the days of old when they were consistantly at the top of the league?