Time to get the PHS basketball program back on right track
Published: Friday, August 10, 2012 at 3:00 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, August 9, 2012 at 4:43 p.m.
It is time for some straight talk about the Petaluma High School boys basketball program. It is a program badly in need of direction and leadership — not to mention players who can put the ball through the hoop.
Through the past several years, the boys basketball team has been led by a succession of coaches and riddled with divisive criticism from within and without. I have been around high school and youth sports for almost four decades and I have never seen so many “experts” willing to tell coaches and administration how to run a program.
No coach over the last seven years has been allowed to put together a program before being verbally chastised by a few (emphasis on few) parents and others who have all the answers, but little of the background information.
The coaches, some good, some questionable, have also been hampered by a lack of basketball talent. The basketball program has had some talented athletes and many players who were willing to work hard, hustle and give the proverbial 110 percent. Unfortunately, there have only been a small handful of true basketball players.
It is not necessary to have a starting lineup of exceptional basketball players, but one or two athletes who are dedicated to basketball first and other sports secondarily, can carry a team a long way. Petaluma has not been blessed with very many basketball-first athletes.
I've said many times that I am no basketball expert, but you don't have to be a John Wooden to note the lack of excitement for the sport at Petaluma High. The school has a long and proud history of basketball success, but in recent years filled the gym only when Casa Grande came calling.
Success, of course, breeds interest, and winning games would go a long way toward putting fans in the bleachers. But it works both ways. Support can bolster success.
It is to be hoped that new coach Scott Davis can bring both success and excitement to the Petaluma boys basketball program. It is also to be hoped that he will be around long enough to build that program and end the cycle of starting from scratch on the varsity level each season.
I am well aware of the sanctions placed on the new coach for NCAA rules violations when he was the head girls coach at Cal Poly Pomona.
Neither he nor anyone else is trying to hide or minimize the NCAA findings or the resulting sanctions on the school and on him and his assistant coach. In a nutshell, the most serious violations concerned inappropriate assistance to “recruitable” athletes.
After reading the NCAA report and talking to the coach, I am convinced of two things. 1) There were violations. 2) There is a high probability that Davis is the right man to get the Petaluma High School basketball back on the right track.
There are two sides to every story, and I believe Davis has done nothing that would compromise his ability to coach high school boys basketball and lead young men.
I like his enthusiasm. I like the way he talks about building his offense around his players' ability rather than trying to force them into his philosophical box. I mostly like the way he talks about building a program without giving up on the current varsity.
The Petaluma High basketball program has gone through a lot, and not a lot of it good, over the last few years. It is time to turn things around and bring excitement back into the Petaluma gym.
Let's give the new coach a chance to get the job done.
(Contact John Jackson at email@example.com)
All rights reserved. This copyrighted material may not be re-published without permission. Links are encouraged.
You'll find a number of new technology features available from this site. With personalized news sent straight to your mobile device.
post your stuff
Petaluma360.com is here for you to post your comments, photos, news and events with the community. Post it now!
Have something to say? Join the conversation!
Upload your photos of community events, holidays, pets, cute kids, breaking news and more, and vote for your favorites!
Submit your area events to encourage others in your community to attend.