Jordyn Carlson’s sports blog – Coaches of FHC


Name: Kenneth George

Sport: Boys Varsity Basketball

Years coached at FHC: 24

Why do you coach? What makes you want to come and work with a bunch of high schoolers?

“For the same reason that I teach. I love watching young people being passionate about something – whether it be sports, a book or a topic of interest. I had many outstanding coaches and teachers in my lifetime, so it is an honor to help young people in the classroom and on the court. I can’t think of a more important job in our world than teaching and coaching.”

What do you do to motivate your team?

“So many things. But, my best teams didn’t need it. Championship teams are player-driven, and I already see that this year’s team will be that way. This team always looks like it is playing for something bigger than themselves — it’s not just about this season, or this practice, or this game. It’s about years of history around the Rangerball program and a community that supports it. The guys are motivated to carry on a tradition of success. That means I don’t have to do much to keep them working – they are doing it for each other.”

What is your connection to the sport you coach? How did you get started coaching that sport?

“I played high school and college basketball, so although I played other sports, basketball has always been my passion. In about 4th or 5th grade, I became pretty obsessed with getting better and I would spend hours on my driveway shooting baskets. My dad was a high school basketball coach, too, so I would spend many hours in the gym watching his practices — and, as I got older, joining in his practices.”

How do you help your team deal with losses?

“It’s hard. But, after many years of coaching, I’ve realized that the big picture is not about the wins and losses. There are some losses in my career that I’ll never forget. As for the guys, they usually bounce back much more quickly than I do. There is always another game and another goal to reach. The last loss of each season is obviously different, but every other loss is just part of the process of getting better and striving towards perfection.”

What do you think that everyone should know about coaching?

“That we understand how difficult it is to be a parent and to be an athlete. We’ve been there, too, so we understand how badly you want your athlete to get in the game and we understand the pressures the athletes are under. Sometimes, I think, it seems like people think coaches are not aware of how every practice and game impacts every player – and therefore, every family. But, we do know.”

What is your favorite coaching memory?

“This will be hard to narrow down. Here’s a list of some of them:

  1. Home against Lowell in 2002 with 2 minutes left in the game when I knew that we had clinched the first league championship in 16 years at FHC. I was in tears.
  2. District win over Rockford at Greenville. They were undefeated and we had one loss. It was an incredible performance by the team — we couldn’t have played much better.
  3. Coaching my sons, Jordan and Tyler grew up in Rangerball, so coaching them has been special. I’m proud of how hard both of them worked to become good high school players.
  4. All three quarterfinal games have been amazing experiences. To be one win away from playing in the Breslin in the final four is quite a feat.
  5. The weddings I’ve gone to for former players are always fun.
  6. I have two former players as my JV and freshman coach. To have them come back to FHC and commit themselves to the program is gratifying on so many levels.”

What is your favorite quote about life?

“Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson