Monday, July 22, 2013
- by B.B. Branton
Former Brainerd All-City point guard, Tyrus Ward led the Panthers to a 27-5 record and a 6-AAA District title as a senior in 2002.
A decade plus later he is now ready to call the plays from the bench as he is the Panthers new head girls basketball coach replacing Caroline Jackson who retired at the end of this past season after 40 seasons and a state championship in 1984.
“I am a Brainerd alum and want to give back to the school in any way I can and being the Brainerd girls basketball coach is a great way to do that,” said Ward who teaches History and was a three-sport star for the Panthers earning all-state honors in football and was an All-American in track.
Ward has seen first hand how players can improve by excellent off-season play as his middle school age daughter plays AAU basketball for the Tennessee Extreme.
“I want to continue the great winning basketball tradition that coach Jackson built at this school and we can do that by focusing on a solid off-season player development program.”
An assistant coach with the Brainerd football program, Ward also emphasizes life away from the court.
"I and my staff want to make sure our players graduate and are college and career ready when they leave here after their senior year,” stated Ward who played college football at East Tennessee State and Tennessee at Chattanooga and has a degree in Sociology from UTC.
Kevin Kauchack is Ward's full-time assistant and Shara Claybrook will serve as a volunteer assistant.
"The wins and district and region titles will come, but we must become closer as a team and continue to improve after each practice and each game."
"I am really happy that Tyrus is our new girls basketball coach," said Brainerd principal Uras Agee Monday morning. "As a teacher and coach he knows our students and has a dedication and focus to make our players better in all areas of their high school life."
contact B.B. Branton at firstname.lastname@example.org