“In order to coach and still keep up with my school work I had to sacrifice some other things in my life. Many times I found myself heading straight to the library after practice. It was tough but it had to be done. ” – Kiere Fields, Wesley football student coach
By: Cheyenne Lazarus and Kennard Squirrell
Some student coaches find it difficult when making the move from being a player to a coach.
“Transitioning from a player to a coach was a challenge for me at first because I am fresh out of college,” said Megan Fox, a graduate from Arcadia University who helps coach Wesley women’s basketball. “I struggled with finding a balance between still feeling like a player while transitioning to an authority figure.”
Some coaches, like senior Kiere Fields, a Wesley football student coach, say they want to give back to the sport that he’s passionate about.
“It feels great being able to help mentor the young guys to help them be the best men they can be,” he said. “I love Wesley football and I want to see them do great things.
Student coaching comes with many obstacles, including time management and experience.
“In order to coach and still keep up with my school work I had to sacrifice some other things in my life,” Fields said. “Many times I found myself heading straight to the library after practice. It was tough but it had to be done. ”
However, Megan Fox said she was able to balance her school work and athletics as an undergraduate.
“I am pretty good at multitasking which is a great skill that every coach should possess,” she said.
“I like to be on top of my school work and not procrastinate,” she said. “When I get an assignment I like to just go ahead and get it done.”
The majority of athletes come from different coaching backgrounds.
Head softball coach Juli Greep said she was open-minded when it comes to decision making with her assistant coaches.
“We do a really good job with balancing each other and making sure we do the best thing for the team,” she said.
Fox said leadership is a must when coaching a sport.
“To be a good coach, I believe you must lead by example, through both your actions and communication,” she said.
Most aspiring coaches first mimic the styles of their coaching heroes.
Fields admires professional coaches such as Phil Jackson, Bill Belichick and Gregg Poppovich.
“They have found a recipe for winning for so long,” he said. “No matter what players they have they always find a way to win and to me it’s impressive to know how to coach and win in so many eras.”
Fox said her ultimate goal is to become a head coach.
“I hope to spend a few more years as an assistant to learn more and get a better understanding of coaching,” she said.