Springtown Athletic Director Brad Turner has dealt with dwindling resources over the past three years as coaching positions are vacated without replacement, but he is fully aware he is not alone. And despite the shrinking org chart of his coaching staff, Turner is matter-of-fact about the current environment of using coaching talent as best he can, and grateful for the staffing resources retained.
“Overall, we are probably down 10 coaches from three years ago,” Turner said. “But that’s not just in Springtown. Times are hard everywhere, and we are luckier here than some other districts.
“We haven’t cut players or programs, we’re just supporting our athletics with less bodies, which means our coaches are working a lot of hours.”
Turner, who is also the Porcupines’ head football coach, spent at least part of his summer assuring the staff was at full strength, though “full” has been somewhat redefined. Without the luxury of a one-to-one replacement, hardly ever the case for ADs, tweaks here and there help redistribute the load when necessary.
And the other formidable factor, often a deal breaker, in hiring coaches is to assure candidates have the credentials to teach the specific subjects in the classroom.
But sometimes, you get lucky.
“We have a new head coach for girl’s basketball,” Turner said of the Lady Porcupines’ program. “Susan Croft had been a head coach and girls’ athletic coordinator for 14 years in the Fort Worth ISD, at Southwest High School.
“She’s been to the regional tournament a few times, and is a very good coach. She took an assistant coaching job here last year, moving here and putting her kids in school here. That assistant’s job lasted exactly one year and she is now the head coach.”
Croft’s return to the head coaching was prompted by the departure of Ken Thompson, who headed up the program previously.