When you walk into the Rappaport gymnasium and look at the large Independent School League (ISL) and New England Championship banners on the walls you cannot help but be struck by the remarkable athletic success that our school has enjoyed throughout its history. What I tell people all the time is that those banners represent far more than wins and losses. They represent decades of coaches putting in the time to build powerful relationships with Nobles student-athletes. Coaches like Flood Sr., Putnam, Terry, Clark, Horton Sr., Storer, Lewis, Flood Jr., Nickerson, Marinaro, Carey, Snyder, Sullivan, Kehlenbeck, Harrington, Harrison, Kern, Guy, Toubman, Resor and countless others have taught us that championships matter, but the relationships built during those title runs matter much, much more.
When I first began coaching the girls’ basketball team close to 12 years ago, the first women’s coach that I studied was the great Pat Summitt from the University of Tennessee. I ordered every one of her books and I poured through them page after page grasping onto every insight that could help to prepare me for working with young women for the first time. She was a brilliant coach, a master motivator and a true believer in “relationships over championships.”
This week Coach Summitt was honored with the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage at the annual ESPY awards. The video tribute to her featured words from her student-athletes about the impact that she has had on their lives beyond the basketball court. I couldn’t help but think about all of the Nobles graduates who would have similar things to say about their former coaches.
If you haven’t seen the video tribute I have included the link below. I hope you enjoy.