Wendell Weathers Steps Aside As Ooltewah Wrestling Coach

Veteran Educator To Be Dean Of Students Now

Thursday, May 1, 2014 - by John Hunt

There's another changing of the guard in Ooltewah's athletic program.

Wendell Weathers, who has been the head wrestling coach for the Owls these past 13 years, has been pondering a life-changing decision in recent months and he made his intentions public on Thursday afternoon when he announced to the members of his team that he's taking on new responsibility at the North Hamilton County school and that he would no longer be there leader on the mat.

Weathers had his first head coaching job in wrestling at Rhea County where he spent two years before taking over the Ooltewah program.  He turned the Owls from pretenders to contenders in a short time and they had their best season in 2008 when they finished as the runner-up at the State Duals behind the Bradley Bears.

The soft-spoken 50-year-old son of legendary coach Tom Weathers has no idea how many dual meets he won as the Ooltewah coach, but he was blessed to coach three young men to individual state titles, including Jake Young in 2007 and 2009, Cody Sliger in 2007 and 2008 and Cody Hood in 2009.

"I don't feel very organized right now as I get a little emotional just talking about it.  It's hard to articulate just how I feel right now, but this is the natural next step for me as I feel like I can serve Ooltewah High School better in a different role," he said late Thursday afternoon.

"I told the members of my team today and they were a little bit shocked to hear it.  I'm not sure if that's good or bad.  My new title will be Dean of Students, which means that I'll get to work closely with the current administration.

"I've had a great run as a wrestling coach and I must give credit to a couple of assistant coaches who have made my job easy.  Ryan Cooper was here for many years and J.D. Dunbar was my assistant this past year and they both deserve a lot of credit for the success we've had," Weathers added.

Jim Jarvis is the Ooltewah principal and he may be the happiest guy on staff to hear of Weathers' decision.

"Wendell Weathers has been a tremendous asset to our entire athletic program and he may be the most unselfish coach I've ever been around," Jarvis said during a break before another after-school event began.

"He has been a real ambassador for our school.  He's been thinking about this decision for a long time and he's done a lot of praying about it, but he has aspirations to be involved in school administration and he will be tremendous in that role.

"Wendell will be working mostly with ninth graders.  I've always felt that if you wanted something done and done right, all you had to do was contact Wendell Weathers.  I have all the confidence in the world in his ability to take this next step forward," Jarvis nodded.

Jesse Nayadley has been down a much similar path to Weathers in the past year as he took over as the Ooltewah athletic director before giving up his position as the head coach of the Ooltewah boys' basketball team.  He knows exactly what his buddy is going through.

"Number one, we're thrilled to have him move up on our staff," Nayadley said Thursday afternoon.

"He's been a great coach for a long, long time, but he may be an even better person.  It was a tough decision for him as he loves Ooltewah wrestling, but I know how he feels as I went through the same thing in the past year," Nayadley concluded.

Persons interested in applying for Weathers' old job have until midnight Monday to submit their resume.  Jarvis and others will go through the interview process with hopes of naming a new coach by the end of next week.

(Email John Hunt at nomarathonmoose@Comcast.net)


CABC Partnering With Elite Hoops Basketball And NIKE Basketball Camps This Spring

The Chattanooga Area Basketball Club will be partnering with Elite Hoops Basketball and NIKE Basketball Camps starting this Spring. Spring Schedule: Monday - 6:00pm & 7:30pm @ Hamilton Heights Christian Academy *Skill Development Training Thursday - 5:00pm @ Redemption Point *Skill Development Training Thursday -6:30pm ... (click for more)

Cleveland State Shifts Funding For Athletic Scholarships

Cleveland State Community College renewed its membership with the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) as a Division I participant. This means the college is eligible to provide the full range of athletic scholarships available – including scholarships beyond the cost of tuition. Cleveland State President Dr. Bill Seymour has communicated a decision to begin ... (click for more)

Hamilton County Principals Say Part 1 Of TN Ready Testing Should Be Cut Due To Online System Failure

Hamilton County principals are asking that Part 1 of the TN Ready Assessment be dropped this year due to the recent crash of the online system for the program. The principals also asked that any Part 1 TN Ready test results  not be applied to students’ grades or to evaluations and rankings for school personnel and school districts. The local principals also ... (click for more)

Greenholtz Collects $71,641 For Criminal Court Judge Campaign; Little Has $22,850; Patterson $20,134

Judge Tom Greenholtz reported $71,641 received for his campaign to remain as judge of Criminal Court, Division II. He was named by Governor Bill Haslam as the interim replacement for Judge Rebecca Stern, who retired before her term was up. Mike Little had $22,850, and Boyd Patterson received $20,134. Here is the report for Tom Greenholtz: ... (click for more)

Innocent Until Proven Guilty, Even Athletes

From reading Randy Smith's column on the lawsuit against UT it is pretty evident that he never took a legal course in his life. I was under the impression that in this country one was innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. It appears this no longer applies to athletes(particularly black athletes) in the U.S. in 2016. I have always said that if I am picked for jury duty ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Warmth For Cold Days

I come across all sorts of warm things every day and as we burrow out of sub-freezing temperatures for a day or two, shaking off ice and snow, allow me to share a few things for a change that may take the bite out of the winter wind. This is what helps me. * * * Judy Bellenfant, who has been a soul mate ever since we shared jokes in high school classrooms, sends along this ... (click for more)