Funny, strange, memorable moments at State....
05/20/2018 11:45:15 PM
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I'm older than Dean Hays, so you know I've been to a few State meets. This will be my last as a coach and I'm going to share a few funny, odd, memorable things from the State Meet. These aren't great performances but things that occurred on the periphery. Please feel welcome to comment or add to these. I'll add to my memories as the week goes on. I hope some of you enjoy these memories and I'' add to the list as the week progresses. #1. Parkway West Loses a Tent for the National Anthem. This happened during the early 90's. Back then the team tents, few though they were, were located outside the fence on the North curve at Lincoln. So Friday afternoon, PW had lowered their tent to avoid wind damage. They had an old, heavy canvas tent that had been waterproofed with some kind of heavy water repellant paint in their school colors. Much different than todays e-z up light weight tents. Anyway, we had parked on the hill above the backstretch and next to JCHS. As we were walking down the hill the announcement for the National Anthem came over the load speakers. We stopped and paid proper respect. Now, what we didn't know was the Lincoln ROTC had mentioned to the coaches at the tents to move out of the way as they were going to throw a explosive/dummy grenade up during the Anthem. Parkway West wasn't there yet. So as we heard the National Anthem, a cadet threw the explosive device over his shoulder. It went over the fence and rolled/bounced under the gap in the PW tent where it was held up by the cooler underneath. When the anthem got to the part where it says, "The rockets red glare, the bombs bursting in air" the charge detonated! It was a very effective addition to the anthem presentation! Then I saw the PW tent about 10 to 15 feet in the air, on fire, a smoke ring coming from the hole, and wafting back to earth. Coach Ski from Lafayette and a few others ran over an stomped out the fire on the tent. Funny scene but the look on Coach Ray Davis' face when PW girls arrived was priceless!! Lincoln ROTC bought PW a modern tent.. #2. Rod Staggs and the Gate Guard... Again this happened around 1991 or so. I was there early on Friday and actually was allowed on the track to help get marks down for a HJ'er. Younger coaches don't understand how limited coaches were to access to their athletes was back in the day. Anyway, the tents were in the same place, outside the north curve, as in the story above. Some how Rod Staggs and his Berkeley boys team came on the infield carrying tarp, tent, all their gear, etc. When they got to the gate from the track leading from the track to where they were to put their gear, the guard wouldn't let them out. Rod asked why and was told that all of his kids and coaches had to have numbers, hand stamps, etc. or he wouldn't let them out. He told Rod he had to lug all of the kids and equipment back up through the stands, out the front gate and walk down the grass hill to the area about 15' from 1 where he stood. Rod explained that he hadn't stopped to get his packet with numbers etc., but he would as soon as they went through the gate and set up their camp. The guard refused to let them through. Rod then told his kids to set up their camp in the grass in the NW corner of the track area, just outside the start line for the 300h. The guard told him he couldn't do that. Rod said, you are supposed to keep unauthorized people out of this are, but you are keeping us in this area, so this is where we are camping. Finally, after getting on his walkie talkie, the guard let them out. I watched the whole thing and couldn't stop laughing! #3. Last one for today. Still in the early '90's time frame. The class 4 boys 4x800 was being run. 16 fast teams. At the first exchange the officials told the outgoing runners to hold their position based on where their team was coming off of the curve. So 5 or 6 teams were in a cluster coming to the exchange. A gap opened up inside about lane 2. @ kids in the back of the pack jumped into the hole and came through in 2 side by side. the hand off was a complete mess. Kids couldn't get inside to take the handoff from their teammate, while others in the incoming pack were forced outside and their receiving teammate was inside. Kids reaching over and others, hands and batons everywhere, yet everyone came through with out a baton being dropped. About 30 minutes after the race, I heard a kid tell his teammate that they finished with someone else's baton. Not my kids, nor my affair. I do know the two teams involved and they exchanged batons later, but that's over. Just funny that kids ended up with the wrong baton and didn't know it for 30 minutes or more. Interesting memories from State. More tomorrow, if you choose to read. Add if you see fit.
I'm older than Dean Hays, so you know I've been to a few State meets. This will be my last as a coach and I'm going to share a few funny, odd, memorable things from the State Meet. These aren't great performances but things that occurred on the periphery. Please feel welcome to comment or add to these. I'll add to my memories as the week goes on. I hope some of you enjoy these memories and I'' add to the list as the week progresses.

#1. Parkway West Loses a Tent for the National Anthem. This happened during the early 90's. Back then the team tents, few though they were, were located outside the fence on the North curve at Lincoln. So Friday afternoon, PW had lowered their tent to avoid wind damage. They had an old, heavy canvas tent that had been waterproofed with some kind of heavy water repellant paint in their school colors. Much different than todays e-z up light weight tents. Anyway, we had parked on the hill above the backstretch and next to JCHS. As we were walking down the hill the announcement for the National Anthem came over the load speakers. We stopped and paid proper respect. Now, what we didn't know was the Lincoln ROTC had mentioned to the coaches at the tents to move out of the way as they were going to throw a explosive/dummy grenade up during the Anthem. Parkway West wasn't there yet. So as we heard the National Anthem, a cadet threw the explosive device over his shoulder. It went over the fence and rolled/bounced under the gap in the PW tent where it was held up by the cooler underneath. When the anthem got to the part where it says, "The rockets red glare, the bombs bursting in air" the charge detonated! It was a very effective addition to the anthem presentation! Then I saw the PW tent about 10 to 15 feet in the air, on fire, a smoke ring coming from the hole, and wafting back to earth. Coach Ski from Lafayette and a few others ran over an stomped out the fire on the tent. Funny scene but the look on Coach Ray Davis' face when PW girls arrived was priceless!! Lincoln ROTC bought PW a modern tent..

#2. Rod Staggs and the Gate Guard... Again this happened around 1991 or so. I was there early on Friday and actually was allowed on the track to help get marks down for a HJ'er. Younger coaches don't understand how limited coaches were to access to their athletes was back in the day. Anyway, the tents were in the same place, outside the north curve, as in the story above. Some how Rod Staggs and his Berkeley boys team came on the infield carrying tarp, tent, all their gear, etc. When they got to the gate from the track leading from the track to where they were to put their gear, the guard wouldn't let them out. Rod asked why and was told that all of his kids and coaches had to have numbers, hand stamps, etc. or he wouldn't let them out. He told Rod he had to lug all of the kids and equipment back up through the stands, out the front gate and walk down the grass hill to the area about 15' from 1 where he stood. Rod explained that he hadn't stopped to get his packet with numbers etc., but he would as soon as they went through the gate and set up their camp. The guard refused to let them through. Rod then told his kids to set up their camp in the grass in the NW corner of the track area, just outside the start line for the 300h. The guard told him he couldn't do that. Rod said, you are supposed to keep unauthorized people out of this are, but you are keeping us in this area, so this is where we are camping. Finally, after getting on his walkie talkie, the guard let them out. I watched the whole thing and couldn't stop laughing!

#3. Last one for today. Still in the early '90's time frame. The class 4 boys 4x800 was being run. 16 fast teams. At the first exchange the officials told the outgoing runners to hold their position based on where their team was coming off of the curve. So 5 or 6 teams were in a cluster coming to the exchange. A gap opened up inside about lane 2. @ kids in the back of the pack jumped into the hole and came through in 2 side by side. the hand off was a complete mess. Kids couldn't get inside to take the handoff from their teammate, while others in the incoming pack were forced outside and their receiving teammate was inside. Kids reaching over and others, hands and batons everywhere, yet everyone came through with out a baton being dropped. About 30 minutes after the race, I heard a kid tell his teammate that they finished with someone else's baton. Not my kids, nor my affair. I do know the two teams involved and they exchanged batons later, but that's over. Just funny that kids ended up with the wrong baton and didn't know it for 30 minutes or more. Interesting memories from State.

More tomorrow, if you choose to read. Add if you see fit.
05/21/2018 9:58:28 AM
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Those are great stories! More please!!!
Those are great stories! More please!!!
05/21/2018 2:08:32 PM
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2009 Class 1 boys SP. I young man from a school close to Arkansas arrived at the meet in, I think, blue jean cut-off shorts and a t-shirt. No school uniform. Fred informed the kid he had to be a school uniform to throw. Craig Barker, Lawson Superintendent at the time, was the head SP judge and asked, "Any uniform?" Fred said sure. The kid threw in a Lawson uniform that day which was quite snug on him and took 7th. Won't name the school he was from but their mascot should be the Explorers. 1998 Class 1 boys 4X100 relay. A school just to the east of us, I will make up a fictitious name and call them Norborne, had one of their kids forget their uniform shirt. The coach stopped at Wal-Mart to get 4 black wife-beaters for the kids to wear. They ran their prelim and finished next to last. Before going back home, they stopped back at Wal-Mart, returned their shirts and got their money back. Not sure of the year, but before the Class 3-4 meet I am sitting in my chair looking at the meet program while kids were warming up on the track when I became aware that at least 4 pairs of eyes were looking at me. Then I had a flashback and remembered the last thing I had heard was, “If you hadn’t worn a thong you wouldn’t be having that problem now.” One young lady finally had enough courage to ask, “Can we say that word out here?” I said it was OK. Then another piped up and said, “It is still inappropriate” with the last word having several extra syllables thrown in for good measure. I would name the school but it would not be PC for me to do so.
2009 Class 1 boys SP. I young man from a school close to Arkansas arrived at the meet in, I think, blue jean cut-off shorts and a t-shirt. No school uniform. Fred informed the kid he had to be a school uniform to throw. Craig Barker, Lawson Superintendent at the time, was the head SP judge and asked, "Any uniform?" Fred said sure. The kid threw in a Lawson uniform that day which was quite snug on him and took 7th. Won't name the school he was from but their mascot should be the Explorers.
1998 Class 1 boys 4X100 relay. A school just to the east of us, I will make up a fictitious name and call them Norborne, had one of their kids forget their uniform shirt. The coach stopped at Wal-Mart to get 4 black wife-beaters for the kids to wear. They ran their prelim and finished next to last. Before going back home, they stopped back at Wal-Mart, returned their shirts and got their money back.
Not sure of the year, but before the Class 3-4 meet I am sitting in my chair looking at the meet program while kids were warming up on the track when I became aware that at least 4 pairs of eyes were looking at me. Then I had a flashback and remembered the last thing I had heard was, "If you hadn't worn a thong you wouldn't be having that problem now." One young lady finally had enough courage to ask, "Can we say that word out here?" I said it was OK. Then another piped up and said, "It is still inappropriate" with the last word having several extra syllables thrown in for good measure. I would name the school but it would not be PC for me to do so.
05/21/2018 9:54:08 PM
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STATE Memories Part II: #4. Gate Guard gone Crazy! So I'm pretty sure this was the same year as the Rod Staggs being locked in incident. I'm pretty sure it was 1991. Anyway, Lafayette had the first tent just outside of the gate. Steve Peters was the defending State Champion in the class 4 800m. Steve went onto the infield and I believe a teammate was with him. Anyway, he warmed up in his flats and left his spikes in the tent, literally 15' from the gate. He/they warmed up, got hip numbers and went to retrieve their spikes. Plenty of time. Well about 2 minutes after they walked out, the Guard decided he'd had enough. Potty break, needed a sandwich, going home, who knows? Anyway, he left his station, but closed and locked the gate! Steve had just tied his spikes as the padlock closed. Nothing could get this guy to open the gate, he was leaving. We were trying to get officials inside the fence to call to get the gate unlocked. One guy said the kids should just go up the hill and come through the front gate. So you want the defending State Champ to run up the big hill, fight their way through the crowd at the front gate, get to the entry down the stairs and out the hallway, in spikes mind you, and be mentally prepared to race for a Championship? Not the warm up routine I've ever seen recommended by any coach. By now they are calling for 2 kids to report for the 800, Steve being one of them. They are lining up to come down the straight from the bullpen to the start. Finally, I got Rusty Broderick's attention. He was a curve judge that year. When I explained in a frantic voice what was going on, he ran and got somebody with a Walkie talkie, and the meet was delayed until somebody with a key showed up. Steve didn't place in the 800, shocked, but he did get 3rd in the 1600. BTW, Steve wasn't my athlete. I coached on the girls team, but I was pretty upset with what he went through. #5. This story includes being locked in and locked out and it involved me personally. This is more modern and was 2015. This was the last year at Lincoln and the first year of having Class 5. MSHSAA was apparently worried about Lincoln handling 3 classes at once and sent out a message that the Jeff City High School track would be available as a warm up track and the field event areas would be open as well. This sounded great and is common in Olympic and World Championships. So I had a Pole Vaulter who was between Poles. She arranged to borrow a pole from MICDS, should she need it. She wanted to do a few pop ups on the pole, just to feel how it reacted. Being very busy on Friday with other events, we didn't get over to the HS. Saturday morning, we had a break and I took her over to the vault area. The gates next to the driveway by the shot area was wide open. A boys team was checking their 4x100 handoffs. A few were working on block starts and a few others were just warming up. My girl warmed up and I took off the cover. She got a few jumps in and it started to rain, AGAIN. Remember how the Tent City in the BBall outfield became a Swamp? Anyway, we were covering the pole grip, when a guy in the Jeff City team shirt came out on the landing above the garages and told everybody that the track was closed. We could only be out there on Friday. That wasn't what MSHSAA had posted, but we were ready to leave anyway. I sent my Vaulter back to Lincoln with the pole. I started recovering the HS pits. After my girl was gone, he locked the big gate and directed the boys through the building and out. He yelled to me to get out as well. I told him I would be right out as I was recovering the PV pits by myself. I finished and went up the stairs to the door where he showed the boys out. LOCKED. I knocked, then beat, then screamed, all to no avail! He was gone. So I checked the front gate. Locked! I walked the perimeter of the fenced area we now use for the State Meet. At every gate, LOCKED! Finally I found a gap under the gate by the NW exit near the parking lot. I couldn't fit under it, but I could slide my Coaching Bag, about 35 pounds, containing extra spikes, a great array of first aid needs, stop watches, Pliers, visegrips, files, scissors, thumbtacks, rule book, etc., etc. Once the bag and my clipboard were out, I was left to climb the fence. By now I'm soaking wet, cussing the guy who locked me in and wondering what was going to happen if a 66+ year old man fell trying to climb a wet chain link fence, with wet shoes, etc. I thought of Rod Staggs, but I couldn't just pitch my tent at the HS. So I was locked in the JCHS track and out of the State Meet. I did climb it successfully, but I was a pretty hot old man for a while!! BTW, I thought about going back to the PV pits and uncovering them, but a rare moment of maturity set in. That and I didn't want to get any wetter. Sorry so long. More tomorrow. Just remember that memories are gathered along the way and not just in competition! Good Luck to all this weekend!
STATE Memories Part II:
#4. Gate Guard gone Crazy! So I'm pretty sure this was the same year as the Rod Staggs being locked in incident. I'm pretty sure it was 1991. Anyway, Lafayette had the first tent just outside of the gate. Steve Peters was the defending State Champion in the class 4 800m. Steve went onto the infield and I believe a teammate was with him. Anyway, he warmed up in his flats and left his spikes in the tent, literally 15' from the gate. He/they warmed up, got hip numbers and went to retrieve their spikes. Plenty of time. Well about 2 minutes after they walked out, the Guard decided he'd had enough. Potty break, needed a sandwich, going home, who knows? Anyway, he left his station, but closed and locked the gate! Steve had just tied his spikes as the padlock closed. Nothing could get this guy to open the gate, he was leaving. We were trying to get officials inside the fence to call to get the gate unlocked. One guy said the kids should just go up the hill and come through the front gate. So you want the defending State Champ to run up the big hill, fight their way through the crowd at the front gate, get to the entry down the stairs and out the hallway, in spikes mind you, and be mentally prepared to race for a Championship? Not the warm up routine I've ever seen recommended by any coach. By now they are calling for 2 kids to report for the 800, Steve being one of them. They are lining up to come down the straight from the bullpen to the start. Finally, I got Rusty Broderick's attention. He was a curve judge that year. When I explained in a frantic voice what was going on, he ran and got somebody with a Walkie talkie, and the meet was delayed until somebody with a key showed up. Steve didn't place in the 800, shocked, but he did get 3rd in the 1600. BTW, Steve wasn't my athlete. I coached on the girls team, but I was pretty upset with what he went through.

#5. This story includes being locked in and locked out and it involved me personally. This is more modern and was 2015. This was the last year at Lincoln and the first year of having Class 5. MSHSAA was apparently worried about Lincoln handling 3 classes at once and sent out a message that the Jeff City High School track would be available as a warm up track and the field event areas would be open as well. This sounded great and is common in Olympic and World Championships. So I had a Pole Vaulter who was between Poles. She arranged to borrow a pole from MICDS, should she need it. She wanted to do a few pop ups on the pole, just to feel how it reacted. Being very busy on Friday with other events, we didn't get over to the HS. Saturday morning, we had a break and I took her over to the vault area. The gates next to the driveway by the shot area was wide open. A boys team was checking their 4x100 handoffs. A few were working on block starts and a few others were just warming up. My girl warmed up and I took off the cover. She got a few jumps in and it started to rain, AGAIN. Remember how the Tent City in the BBall outfield became a Swamp? Anyway, we were covering the pole grip, when a guy in the Jeff City team shirt came out on the landing above the garages and told everybody that the track was closed. We could only be out there on Friday. That wasn't what MSHSAA had posted, but we were ready to leave anyway. I sent my Vaulter back to Lincoln with the pole. I started recovering the HS pits. After my girl was gone, he locked the big gate and directed the boys through the building and out. He yelled to me to get out as well. I told him I would be right out as I was recovering the PV pits by myself. I finished and went up the stairs to the door where he showed the boys out. LOCKED. I knocked, then beat, then screamed, all to no avail! He was gone. So I checked the front gate. Locked! I walked the perimeter of the fenced area we now use for the State Meet. At every gate, LOCKED! Finally I found a gap under the gate by the NW exit near the parking lot. I couldn't fit under it, but I could slide my Coaching Bag, about 35 pounds, containing extra spikes, a great array of first aid needs, stop watches, Pliers, visegrips, files, scissors, thumbtacks, rule book, etc., etc. Once the bag and my clipboard were out, I was left to climb the fence. By now I'm soaking wet, cussing the guy who locked me in and wondering what was going to happen if a 66+ year old man fell trying to climb a wet chain link fence, with wet shoes, etc. I thought of Rod Staggs, but I couldn't just pitch my tent at the HS. So I was locked in the JCHS track and out of the State Meet. I did climb it successfully, but I was a pretty hot old man for a while!! BTW, I thought about going back to the PV pits and uncovering them, but a rare moment of maturity set in. That and I didn't want to get any wetter.

Sorry so long. More tomorrow. Just remember that memories are gathered along the way and not just in competition! Good Luck to all this weekend!
05/21/2018 10:14:36 PM
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Agreed! Thank you for the stories. They are quite enjoyable! Can't wait for more.
Agreed! Thank you for the stories. They are quite enjoyable! Can't wait for more.
05/21/2018 10:43:04 PM
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Great Stuff Jim! Keep them coming! I meant to talk to you at the end of the sectional meet, but everything got crazy with the rain, and thank you. Thanks you for all you've done for the our sport, for helping me out when I asked over the years, for helping a certain young high jumper, and for being someone I call a friend. We in the cross country and track community are going to miss you and I personally will miss our conversations at the track. It won't be the same without you around. Good luck and know that if you ever get the itch to coach again I'll be more than happy to find you a place with us!
Great Stuff Jim! Keep them coming! I meant to talk to you at the end of the sectional meet, but everything got crazy with the rain, and thank you. Thanks you for all you've done for the our sport, for helping me out when I asked over the years, for helping a certain young high jumper, and for being someone I call a friend. We in the cross country and track community are going to miss you and I personally will miss our conversations at the track. It won't be the same without you around. Good luck and know that if you ever get the itch to coach again I'll be more than happy to find you a place with us!
05/22/2018 12:04:48 AM
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@jtsimmons I have more stories coming, but if you could convince Jada Moore to stay home this weekend, I'd have many more for you. Deal? Didn't think so. She is a talent and good luck to her and your team.
@jtsimmons I have more stories coming, but if you could convince Jada Moore to stay home this weekend, I'd have many more for you. Deal? Didn't think so. She is a talent and good luck to her and your team.
05/22/2018 12:07:55 AM
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@Coach_casa Thanks Glen! It means a lot. Don't turn this into something about me though. It's about odd things I've seen/dealt with over the years. Anybody beside Hays have more stories? Pretend we are all sitting around having a burger and an adult beverage. What story do you have?
@Coach_casa Thanks Glen! It means a lot. Don't turn this into something about me though. It's about odd things I've seen/dealt with over the years. Anybody beside Hays have more stories? Pretend we are all sitting around having a burger and an adult beverage. What story do you have?
05/22/2018 8:28:19 AM
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I have one odd story about travel to state. This was around 8 or 9 years ago and we were caravanning in three cars and had our pole vault poles strapped to the roof of an SUV. We were driving down Highway 50 that is pretty winding and as I'm driving I see the pole vault poles come loose and pop off of the SUV that's in front of me. As they fall to the road, I slam my breaks on in time and fortunately don't run over our pole vault poles! At the moment it wasn't so funny and we were glad that none of them broke. However, it was funny to see the look of horror on our pole vaulter's face and watch her on the brink of hyperventilating! She wasn't very happy with our job of securing the poles! She took her pole vault seriously and was a 4-time state qualifier and 3-time medalist who went on to vault in college. I'm happy to report we've never lost our load of poles since or any other track and field paraphernalia on the road!
I have one odd story about travel to state. This was around 8 or 9 years ago and we were caravanning in three cars and had our pole vault poles strapped to the roof of an SUV. We were driving down Highway 50 that is pretty winding and as I'm driving I see the pole vault poles come loose and pop off of the SUV that's in front of me. As they fall to the road, I slam my breaks on in time and fortunately don't run over our pole vault poles! At the moment it wasn't so funny and we were glad that none of them broke. However, it was funny to see the look of horror on our pole vaulter's face and watch her on the brink of hyperventilating! She wasn't very happy with our job of securing the poles! She took her pole vault seriously and was a 4-time state qualifier and 3-time medalist who went on to vault in college. I'm happy to report we've never lost our load of poles since or any other track and field paraphernalia on the road!
05/22/2018 11:41:56 AM
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Happened to one of our kids a LONG time before my tenure, so hopefully someone who witnessed it, can fill in some more details: Short story, a class 3 female discus thrower (Heather White, RayPec, 1994) launched one of her last throws in the state finals. I believe she was left-handed and the flight of her disc, confused the official who ran into the disc, instead of away from it. It hit him square (possibly in the back) and bounced backward toward the thrower. After some good "conversations" they decided to measure where the disc landed after hitting the official (which stood as the state record for several years) instead of guessing how far it would have traveled. They awarded her 1 additional throw, but she was not able to better the mark that hit the official.
Happened to one of our kids a LONG time before my tenure, so hopefully someone who witnessed it, can fill in some more details:

Short story, a class 3 female discus thrower (Heather White, RayPec, 1994) launched one of her last throws in the state finals. I believe she was left-handed and the flight of her disc, confused the official who ran into the disc, instead of away from it. It hit him square (possibly in the back) and bounced backward toward the thrower. After some good "conversations" they decided to measure where the disc landed after hitting the official (which stood as the state record for several years) instead of guessing how far it would have traveled. They awarded her 1 additional throw, but she was not able to better the mark that hit the official.
05/22/2018 11:15:08 PM
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Day 3- The Theme for today is, My How Things Have Improved. The first two stories are about giving people a little power and they will run with it. A few months ago, Dean Hays posted a very good statement about field event officiating. He said something about the officiating at State being very good, but it's not always that way at local meets. I totally agree with Dean, but these stories will demonstrate that it hasn't always been that way. Thank goodness for the improved standard for officials at State. #6. Campus cop on a power trip. I had an assistant coach, Lew Smith, who taught at Parkway South but coached at Marquette, in the Rockwood District. Parkway wouldn't allow Lew to come to the State meet on Friday, so he would arrive early Saturday morning. This is back when MSHSAA limited the number of assistant coaches who could get in. It was either 1 or 2, but it doesn't matter to the story. I often asked MSHSAA official how many Football Assistants had to buy a ticket and sit in the stands rather than get to coach their kids in the Show Me Bowl, Never got an answer beyond "That's different." Anyway, Lew shows up Saturday morning and I'm in the coaches box/hill next to the bullpen at Lincoln. Lew comes to the fence and get's my attention. He wanted to know where the tent was, did he need to buy a ticket, and what did I need him to do regarding the kids performing that day. Before I could finish my answer, a Lincoln Campus Cop came up and told Lew he had to leave, he wasn't allowed to watch the meet from outside the fence. I said, Ma'am he's not watching the meet, he's my assistant coach and he's getting info as to what needs to be done today." She said, "I don't believe you. If he was a coach, he would have a coaches pass like you." I don't like being called a liar, but stayed pretty calm. I replied. "Ma'am, MSHSAA doesn't give all coaches a pass, and he will have to go buy a ticket in a minute, we just need to get him caught up onwhat is going on today." Again she thought I was lying and said, "I don't believe you!" She then pulled handcuffs out of her belt and said, "If he doesn't move immediately, I'm placing him under arrest for trespassing on Lincoln property, and I'm send officers in to arrest you for interfering with an arrest." Damn, talk about escalating a situation. Lew left and I felt Soooo welcome at Lincoln. BTW, we placed 2nd that year, in class 4 and were able to sneak Lew onto the track for the awards pictures. #7. 2 people showing that they are in charge of their fiefdom. Pretty sure it was 1988. Charmen Jackson of Lafayette had just finished 2nd in the 100m H finals, when the TJ was about to start. Charmen tried to cross the track to go to the TJ which was directly in front of the stand near the finish line. Later that became a 2nd PV runway. Anyway, the official on the infield told her she couldn't leave, she had to stay for the awards. At the same time the PA announcer was calling for her to go to the TJ or be scratched. She's pleading her case and the guy on the infield won't budge and told her if she left she wouldn't get the medaland would be out of the meet. Total BS. What is a kids to do. We got the TJ officials attention and explained the problem. He wnet across the track, but didn't get her released until someone form MSHSAA intervened. Kid should have never been put in that situation, but she went on and won the TJ anyway. #8. I think this was 1988 as well. In the prelims of the 4x200 girls, the exchange zone judge told the girls the number 2 runner should use Gold to Gold and the number 4 runner should use Black to Black. A girl questioned this saying if had be the reverse of that all year. The official said this is what we run at State. Obviously the kids followed instructions. Yes the split times were crazy. When a protest was filed, one official actually said, "Well they all ran the same distance so why would you need a rerun." Yes each team ran 800meters, but the individual runners ran totally different distances. They reran the class 4 girls 30 minutes after the 4x400 prelims on Friday night. #9. I'm Here But I Don't Really Want To Be: I won't reveal the Officials name,but he was a college coach who was doing it because he was asked or thought it was expected of him. Anyway, he had multiple miss calls that day and didn't seem to care. Here are 2 of the biggest errors. He had been busy all day having a conversation with someone sitting in the front row of the stands, adjacent to the runway back then. Friend, recruits parents? I don't know. On one occasion, he called a girl's name and then turned to talk to the person in the stands. The girls came down the runway and jumped with what was a clear foul to those watching. He never saw it. He said "Mark" and they began measuring. Coaches in the stands were going nuts. When asked how he could measure a jump that he didn't even see, he replied, "I heard it and it was a legal jump." How you can hear a legal jump versus a foul, I DO NOT KNOW. The other out and out mistake occurred when a girl had a legal jump but walked out of the front of the pit. When they started to measure where she landed, coaches were yelling that she should be measured from where she stepped out of the pit nearest the board. Correct call on the part of the coaches. The official said he didn't see her leave the pit so he measured fromwhere she landed. I didn't even have a girl in LJ, but I couldn't take it anymore. I asked, "Sir, was the pit properly raked before the jump?" He said my pits are always properly raked." I then asked if that was the case, who made those foot prints going out of the front of the pit, since nobody else had been in the sand in the front of the pit. He didn't have an answer but measure the jump anyway. I didn't know if Steve Miller from Francis Howell was going to have a heart attack before or if he was going to jump out of the stands and throttle the man first. Luckily neither happened. Yes things are never perfect, but we've come a long way with regard to how coaches and athletes are treated and in the professionalism of our officials today. Sometimes the "Good Old Days" weren't as good as they seemed.
Day 3- The Theme for today is, My How Things Have Improved. The first two stories are about giving people a little power and they will run with it. A few months ago, Dean Hays posted a very good statement about field event officiating. He said something about the officiating at State being very good, but it's not always that way at local meets. I totally agree with Dean, but these stories will demonstrate that it hasn't always been that way. Thank goodness for the improved standard for officials at State.

#6. Campus cop on a power trip. I had an assistant coach, Lew Smith, who taught at Parkway South but coached at Marquette, in the Rockwood District. Parkway wouldn't allow Lew to come to the State meet on Friday, so he would arrive early Saturday morning. This is back when MSHSAA limited the number of assistant coaches who could get in. It was either 1 or 2, but it doesn't matter to the story. I often asked MSHSAA official how many Football Assistants had to buy a ticket and sit in the stands rather than get to coach their kids in the Show Me Bowl, Never got an answer beyond "That's different." Anyway, Lew shows up Saturday morning and I'm in the coaches box/hill next to the bullpen at Lincoln. Lew comes to the fence and get's my attention. He wanted to know where the tent was, did he need to buy a ticket, and what did I need him to do regarding the kids performing that day. Before I could finish my answer, a Lincoln Campus Cop came up and told Lew he had to leave, he wasn't allowed to watch the meet from outside the fence. I said, Ma'am he's not watching the meet, he's my assistant coach and he's getting info as to what needs to be done today." She said, "I don't believe you. If he was a coach, he would have a coaches pass like you." I don't like being called a liar, but stayed pretty calm. I replied. "Ma'am, MSHSAA doesn't give all coaches a pass, and he will have to go buy a ticket in a minute, we just need to get him caught up onwhat is going on today." Again she thought I was lying and said, "I don't believe you!" She then pulled handcuffs out of her belt and said, "If he doesn't move immediately, I'm placing him under arrest for trespassing on Lincoln property, and I'm send officers in to arrest you for interfering with an arrest." Damn, talk about escalating a situation. Lew left and I felt Soooo welcome at Lincoln.

BTW, we placed 2nd that year, in class 4 and were able to sneak Lew onto the track for the awards pictures.

#7. 2 people showing that they are in charge of their fiefdom. Pretty sure it was 1988. Charmen Jackson of Lafayette had just finished 2nd in the 100m H finals, when the TJ was about to start. Charmen tried to cross the track to go to the TJ which was directly in front of the stand near the finish line. Later that became a 2nd PV runway. Anyway, the official on the infield told her she couldn't leave, she had to stay for the awards. At the same time the PA announcer was calling for her to go to the TJ or be scratched. She's pleading her case and the guy on the infield won't budge and told her if she left she wouldn't get the medaland would be out of the meet. Total BS. What is a kids to do. We got the TJ officials attention and explained the problem. He wnet across the track, but didn't get her released until someone form MSHSAA intervened. Kid should have never been put in that situation, but she went on and won the TJ anyway.

#8. I think this was 1988 as well. In the prelims of the 4x200 girls, the exchange zone judge told the girls the number 2 runner should use Gold to Gold and the number 4 runner should use Black to Black. A girl questioned this saying if had be the reverse of that all year. The official said this is what we run at State. Obviously the kids followed instructions. Yes the split times were crazy. When a protest was filed, one official actually said, "Well they all ran the same distance so why would you need a rerun." Yes each team ran 800meters, but the individual runners ran totally different distances. They reran the class 4 girls 30 minutes after the 4x400 prelims on Friday night.

#9. I'm Here But I Don't Really Want To Be: I won't reveal the Officials name,but he was a college coach who was doing it because he was asked or thought it was expected of him. Anyway, he had multiple miss calls that day and didn't seem to care. Here are 2 of the biggest errors. He had been busy all day having a conversation with someone sitting in the front row of the stands, adjacent to the runway back then. Friend, recruits parents? I don't know. On one occasion, he called a girl's name and then turned to talk to the person in the stands. The girls came down the runway and jumped with what was a clear foul to those watching. He never saw it. He said "Mark" and they began measuring. Coaches in the stands were going nuts. When asked how he could measure a jump that he didn't even see, he replied, "I heard it and it was a legal jump." How you can hear a legal jump versus a foul, I DO NOT KNOW. The other out and out mistake occurred when a girl had a legal jump but walked out of the front of the pit. When they started to measure where she landed, coaches were yelling that she should be measured from where she stepped out of the pit nearest the board. Correct call on the part of the coaches. The official said he didn't see her leave the pit so he measured fromwhere she landed. I didn't even have a girl in LJ, but I couldn't take it anymore. I asked, "Sir, was the pit properly raked before the jump?" He said my pits are always properly raked." I then asked if that was the case, who made those foot prints going out of the front of the pit, since nobody else had been in the sand in the front of the pit. He didn't have an answer but measure the jump anyway. I didn't know if Steve Miller from Francis Howell was going to have a heart attack before or if he was going to jump out of the stands and throttle the man first. Luckily neither happened.

Yes things are never perfect, but we've come a long way with regard to how coaches and athletes are treated and in the professionalism of our officials today. Sometimes the "Good Old Days" weren't as good as they seemed.
05/23/2018 12:40:20 AM
Admin
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In 2010, my teammate and I were down on the fence at the 300 mark during the C4 Boys 800. Somehow we’d found ourselves down there.. Our teammate was in the lead with 100 meters to go and was about to win the first individual state gold in school history (50 years at the time) so we were understandably stoked and forgot where we were, I guess. We started jumping and doing the side-step, third base coach waving home his runner deal while screaming for him as he made the last turn, excited beyond belief, when an official spotted us and walked over and told us that he could “get (our teammate) disqualified because we were pacing him.” This dude ran the 6th fastest time in state meet history yet our giddy side steps were pacing? Our buzz was killed pretty hard and we were apologizing up and down and pleading with him that he didn’t. Maybe we were in the wrong I don’t know. Maybe I’m misremembering the part where we were running 1:51 800 pace next to him in lane 2 as he sprinted down the last 100 or something.. but geez power trip much?
In 2010, my teammate and I were down on the fence at the 300 mark during the C4 Boys 800. Somehow we'd found ourselves down there.. Our teammate was in the lead with 100 meters to go and was about to win the first individual state gold in school history (50 years at the time) so we were understandably stoked and forgot where we were, I guess. We started jumping and doing the side-step, third base coach waving home his runner deal while screaming for him as he made the last turn, excited beyond belief, when an official spotted us and walked over and told us that he could "get (our teammate) disqualified because we were pacing him." This dude ran the 6th fastest time in state meet history yet our giddy side steps were pacing? Our buzz was killed pretty hard and we were apologizing up and down and pleading with him that he didn't. Maybe we were in the wrong I don't know. Maybe I'm misremembering the part where we were running 1:51 800 pace next to him in lane 2 as he sprinted down the last 100 or something.. but geez power trip much?
05/23/2018 11:18:34 PM
Coach
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Posts: 203
Last post before State. I was going to relate the worst day for me coaching as far as keeping things on track and not effecting the kids. It started at 3am Thur sday morning and went til 3am Friday morning. During that time I was putting out fires constantly with unexpected problems, and they were numerous. However, I feel like my last post had enough negative to last a while. There was one brief where my kids almost brought me to tears, because they had a special team moment on Friday night, despite the chaos I was trying to shelter them from. So today's post isn't just about things that happened at State, but the story involved a performance at State. The moral of this final story for coaches is "Be Careful What You Say, but Own Every Word You Say." So it's 1993 and I'm coaching at Lafayette HS in West St. Louis County. I had a pretty good hurdler named Jan Loussaert. She had already been All State in the 100HH and I think a relay. Anyway, in early March, she was having a day where she was just being lazy and dawdling through warm ups and drills. I got on her a bit about being a leader and setting an example for the puppies, but she was having a Senioritis type day. Early on, I remembered I had left something in my car and gave my keys to a younger girls to get it from my trunk. I made the comment, "Don't drive my car, just get whatever from the trunk." Kidding on my part. Jan said, "Coach I'll get it." I replied, "No! I know you would take my car for a spin." It happened that I had a brand new Chrysler LeBaron Convertible. She complained, and out of nowhere, I said, "You win the State Championship and I'll consider letting you drive my car. But that's going to take a lot of work, so get off your fanny and let's get to work." Fast forward to State, 1993. Jan was undefeated in the hurdles that year, but her foot was hurting pretty bad going into State. I'm questioning myself if I had practiced her too much during the peaking phase. Turn's out that wasn't the problem, but I was leery going into the Prelims. Jan's instructions where to just cruise the prelims and qualify. She had multiple races that weekend. Jan wins the prelim comfortably. Back then we didn't had boards which posted the immediate results, so you had to wait 15 to 30 minutes for the results to be printed and posted on the wall across from the concessions. When I went to check her time I about fell over. She had broken the State Record in the Prelims. I went to the tent where she was icing her foot. I took her out behind the tent and said, "Jan, we came here with 2 goals." She said, Yes. Win the State Championship and break the State Record." I said, " Well, you've just done one of those two." It took a few second to register, I didn't win the Championship, that's tomorrow....Oh My God!!! Really!?!?" I asked her how she ran the race. She said she went out through the first 3 hurdles hard and relaxed to cruise as was the plan. She saw Megan Moser's (Francis Howell North) foot out the corner of her eye at hurdle 5. That was new and she got back on the gas again for 2 hurdles and then just worked on rhythm for the last 3. On to Saturday's finals. She was free to let it all out. Let's put up a time that will last a while. Just as they were finishing setting up the hurdles a storm was approaching from the North and the wind was blowing hard, right into their face. They got the race in, but the time as not what we hoped for. She won in 14.91. Pretty good for 25 years ago, but when you consider she won by .40 of a second it showed her dominance. Shannon O'Dell from Farmington was 2ne in 15.31 and Megan Moser, Jan's college teammate was 3rd. Looking at those times you get the idea as to the strength of the wind. Fast forward to the trip home on a very happy yellow school bus. We had finished 3rd as a team and took lots of time to celebrate, take picks, go get dinner on the way home, etc. Happy, dark bus. I then remember those words I had spoken back in March. Maybe she didn't remember. I settled lower in my seat and listened to young ladies feeling so proud of what they had done. We had just crossed the Missouri River Bridge on Hwy 40 in Chesterfield and less than 15 minutes from school. Then it happened. Jan's voice from the back of the bus drifting through the darkness. Coooaaacchhh? Do I get to drive your car? What could I do? I just said yes. When we got to school, I called my wife from the coaches office. Can you come up to school and give me a ride home? Yes it did take some explaining. My wife followed to Jan's house. I showed her how to work all of the button's and how to control the convertible top. It was close to 10pm. I told her I would be back at noon to reclaim my new car. Her parents just shook their head. Noon on Sunday I return to reclaim my car. Thankfully it was in the same condition as it was the night before, except for the gas gauge. Her Mom talked about the stories from the night before. She had picked up some friends and they began to cruise west county, Some girls had to get home, so more were picked up and they continued. Jan was just waking up when I arrived. I'm glad they had a great time celebrating and even happier that my car was okay! The odometer showed that they had driven 168 miles in their celebration and never left West County. The bottom line to all of these stories? Take time to enjoy the experience. Take it all in, not just the performance on the track. If you happen to win a trophy, celebrate it to the max. Even if it costs you your car for a night. Good luck to everyone this weekend. I'm sure I'll remember my last meet as vividly as those that came before. Hopefully good memories. You people are special people! Celebrate the fact that you impact your athlete's in so many ways beyond just their track performance. Oh yes, coaches be thankful that tent city is not in line of the ROTC during the National Anthem! I'm out!
Last post before State. I was going to relate the worst day for me coaching as far as keeping things on track and not effecting the kids. It started at 3am Thur sday morning and went til 3am Friday morning. During that time I was putting out fires constantly with unexpected problems, and they were numerous. However, I feel like my last post had enough negative to last a while. There was one brief where my kids almost brought me to tears, because they had a special team moment on Friday night, despite the chaos I was trying to shelter them from.

So today's post isn't just about things that happened at State, but the story involved a performance at State. The moral of this final story for coaches is "Be Careful What You Say, but Own Every Word You Say." So it's 1993 and I'm coaching at Lafayette HS in West St. Louis County. I had a pretty good hurdler named Jan Loussaert. She had already been All State in the 100HH and I think a relay. Anyway, in early March, she was having a day where she was just being lazy and dawdling through warm ups and drills. I got on her a bit about being a leader and setting an example for the puppies, but she was having a Senioritis type day. Early on, I remembered I had left something in my car and gave my keys to a younger girls to get it from my trunk. I made the comment, "Don't drive my car, just get whatever from the trunk." Kidding on my part. Jan said, "Coach I'll get it." I replied, "No! I know you would take my car for a spin." It happened that I had a brand new Chrysler LeBaron Convertible. She complained, and out of nowhere, I said, "You win the State Championship and I'll consider letting you drive my car. But that's going to take a lot of work, so get off your fanny and let's get to work."

Fast forward to State, 1993. Jan was undefeated in the hurdles that year, but her foot was hurting pretty bad going into State. I'm questioning myself if I had practiced her too much during the peaking phase. Turn's out that wasn't the problem, but I was leery going into the Prelims. Jan's instructions where to just cruise the prelims and qualify. She had multiple races that weekend. Jan wins the prelim comfortably. Back then we didn't had boards which posted the immediate results, so you had to wait 15 to 30 minutes for the results to be printed and posted on the wall across from the concessions. When I went to check her time I about fell over. She had broken the State Record in the Prelims. I went to the tent where she was icing her foot. I took her out behind the tent and said, "Jan, we came here with 2 goals." She said, Yes. Win the State Championship and break the State Record." I said, " Well, you've just done one of those two." It took a few second to register, I didn't win the Championship, that's tomorrow....Oh My God!!! Really!?!?" I asked her how she ran the race. She said she went out through the first 3 hurdles hard and relaxed to cruise as was the plan. She saw Megan Moser's (Francis Howell North) foot out the corner of her eye at hurdle 5. That was new and she got back on the gas again for 2 hurdles and then just worked on rhythm
for the last 3.

On to Saturday's finals. She was free to let it all out. Let's put up a time that will last a while. Just as they were finishing setting up the hurdles a storm was approaching from the North and the wind was blowing hard, right into their face. They got the race in, but the time as not what we hoped for. She won in 14.91. Pretty good for 25 years ago, but when you consider she won by .40 of a second it showed her dominance. Shannon O'Dell from Farmington was 2ne in 15.31 and Megan Moser, Jan's college teammate was 3rd. Looking at those times you get the idea as to the strength of the wind.

Fast forward to the trip home on a very happy yellow school bus. We had finished 3rd as a team and took lots of time to celebrate, take picks, go get dinner on the way home, etc. Happy, dark bus. I then remember those words I had spoken back in March. Maybe she didn't remember. I settled lower in my seat and listened to young ladies feeling so proud of what they had done. We had just crossed the Missouri River Bridge on Hwy 40 in Chesterfield and less than 15 minutes from school. Then it happened. Jan's voice from the back of the bus drifting through the darkness. Coooaaacchhh? Do I get to drive your car? What could I do? I just said yes. When we got to school, I called my wife from the coaches office. Can you come up to school and give me a ride home? Yes it did take some explaining. My wife followed to Jan's house. I showed her how to work all of the button's and how to control the convertible top. It was close to 10pm. I told her I would be back at noon to reclaim my new car. Her parents just shook their head. Noon on Sunday I return to reclaim my car. Thankfully it was in the same condition as it was the night before, except for the gas gauge. Her Mom talked about the stories from the night before. She had picked up some friends and they began to cruise west county, Some girls had to get home, so more were picked up and they continued. Jan was just waking up when I arrived. I'm glad they had a great time celebrating and even happier that my car was okay! The odometer showed that they had driven 168 miles in their celebration and never left West County.

The bottom line to all of these stories? Take time to enjoy the experience. Take it all in, not just the performance on the track. If you happen to win a trophy, celebrate it to the max. Even if it costs you your car for a night. Good luck to everyone this weekend. I'm sure I'll remember my last meet as vividly as those that came before. Hopefully good memories. You people are special people! Celebrate the fact that you impact your athlete's in so many ways beyond just their track performance. Oh yes, coaches be thankful that tent city is not in line of the ROTC during the National Anthem! I'm out!

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