The Brook Hill School

A weekly message from the Athletic Director

“ALL ORANGE…All The Time”


WINNING AT ALL COST

The young man was a struggling student but a talented athlete who was a key starter on the Varsity Football team.

He was not struggling academically due to the fact that he was incapable, but it was the combination of being learning different as well as having been diagnosed as afflicted with acute laziness.  Consequently, the C+ student failed his math class, which was going to make him ineligible for four weeks.  This ineligibility would result in the star player missing the upcoming playoff game, which would certainly result in a season ending loss for the team.

However, the forward thinking-well intentioned Head Football Coach had a solution to the dilemma at hand.

Of course it was only in the best interest of the student, but the coach lobbied for the player to be placed in Special Education, which, if placed in the program, would result in the blue-chip athlete being declared eligible to compete in the playoffs.  The Committee, understanding the importance of the football team being successful, and being able to justify their placement due to the athletes learning different disability, placed the young man in the “short bus” program, and now the team, the school, the community, and the coach could focus on what was really important…winning. 

Problem solved!

I have preached loud and long concerning coaches attitudes that reflect a “win at all cost” attitude.

Many times this attitude is simply reflective of the theory that as long as we are winning, nothing else matters.  Specifically, how your players act, perform in the classroom, conduct themselves…you name it. “IT” can become irrelevant as long as the athletes can run fast, jump high, and in the end…WIN!

Unfortunately, many times, coaches who do win, can get so consumed with winning, that the character, behavior, and classroom performances of athletes seems to sometimes literally get “put on the back burner”.  Winning does cure a lot of ills, but it can also create a far more serious illness if not done so in the right way.

And coaches, who get so consumed by winning, winning, winning more, and winning it all, get totally engulfed in the pressure to be the best.  Many times this pressure is self-induced along with the pressure of fans and boosters as to “Just Win Baby”.

The Art Briles situation at Baylor seems to speak to this.  Art Briles is a good man.  He is a great coach.  Art Briles was playing football in college at SMU when I was playing basketball at ACU.  He is known to be a man of great character.  The jury is definitely still out on Coach Briles role, if any, in the unacceptable behavior of many of his athletes while off the field.  It appears these young men basically went unchecked and unpunished.  Obviously, the football program which Coach Briles is responsible for, did not make the changes necessary to fix the problems of numerous sexual assault accusations toward players, and apparently failed to deal with the players behavior even on an in house basis.

On the forefront, the appearance is; “We are winning…don’t worry about it”.

At Brook Hill, our coaches want to win.  We pride ourselves in being competitive and successful, but not at the expense of our athlete’s character, behavior, and academics.  I tell people constantly that our coaches have their priorities in the right order.  If your child participates in athletics in Brook Hill, Christ-like character is promoted and expected.  Academic excellence is encouraged and supported.  And, we want to represent our school in a positive manner on the field, on the court, and in the community at large. 

The young man I referred to in the opening paragraph went on to be an All-State football player, and received numerous offers to play collegiately.  However, he did not qualify academically to get into a NCAA school, and is no longer playing the game he loved.

I am very encouraged that our new Head Football Coach Scott Ryle and new Head Volleyball Coach Candise Wise have great expectations for their student athletes, and will hold the athletes accountable for their actions on the court, in the classroom, on the field, and in the community.

And that’s another reason to be “ALL ORANGE”…All The Time!

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The Brook Hill School | 1051 N. Houston St. | Bullard, TX 75757 | (903) 894-5000 | 800.657.3167
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