Taylor TankersleyMrs. LesterAdvanced Grammar and Composition5 March 2012 Senior Speech Have you ever had a passion for something that has never changed throughout your life?Ever since I can remember I have always had a passion for football. I can remember watchingthe Clemson Tigers play on Saturday and the Broncos play on Sunday. In the fifth grade myparents let me play on the football team for my school, but I barely made the weight limit by onepound since I was the smallest one on the field from day one. However, my physical appearancewas actually to my advantage because I was the fastest runner and hardest hitter on the team. Ieven started at quarterback and played defense as well. Every time I put on those football pads Igot an adrenaline rush and I knew I wanted to play in the NFL one day. I can remember onegame, in particular, when I was the game’s M.V.P. I was playing cornerback on defense and Iwas supposed to cover the other team’s receiver. The other team only needed one moretouchdown to win, and the game would be over. When the quarterback said hike, I knew he wasgoing to run the ball to the outside, so I blitzed. He never expected a sixty-four pound kid toknock him on his back. I had saved the game for my team and we won. Afterwards, the coachcame to me and said blitzing the quarterback was actually a smart decision. I explained to himwhy I blitzed, and he told me I would make an excellent coach someday. At the time I did notwant to coach; I wanted to play the game, not stand on the sideline, so at the time, I didn’t thinkvery much of what my coach told me. However, as the years went on, the competition got harderand the players got bigger. I realized that if I wanted to have anything to do with football when Igot older, it would most likely be in, or through, coaching. As a result, I started to create my own
play book and enjoyed the intellectual part of the game. Ever since then, I have pursued mydream of becoming a football coach. Because of my love of sports and competitiveness, thisproject gave me a little taste of what coaching may be like because I had to organize teams andteach people how to play the game. Because I would like to coach after college, I chose a project that helped me use mycoaching and sports skills. I have always loved playing Ultimate Frisbee with friends, so Idecided to host an Ultimate Frisbee fundraiser tournament. During my research, I found that coaching in the current economy is a difficult careerpath to follow because of the low pay and the time it requires. One has to have the passion tocoach and to teach kids. I believe I have both of those qualities. I have always had a love for thegame and I love teaching and instructing people. Now I will tell you the steps I took to complete my senior project. First I had to find afacilitator. I decided on Travis Hanenburg, a teacher and a coach at Cherokee Christian School. Ichose Travis because of his experience and expertise in the coaching field, which is exactly whatI would like to do some day. I found my facilitator through my church. He was one of the firstpeople I met when I moved to Georgia in 2009, and has continued to be a great family friend.Mr. Hanenburg started the boys and girls soccer teams at Cherokee Christian High School and isstill the head coach. First, I had to organize the steps for the Frisbee tournament. I had to establish meetingswith my facilitator. Many problems arose because my facilitator was a teacher and he had towork after the regular school hours during the week. During the fall, I had football practice onthe weekends and couldn’t meet on Friday nights. We fixed these problems by meeting afterchurch on Sundays. The next step in my project was to find a field to use. One problem that
came up was most public fields cost at least a hundred dollars to reserve. It took us months tofinally find a good field to use. About three weeks before the tournament we reserved a field atCalvary Baptist Church. My next step was to ask for prizes and donations from businesses.However, many businesses’ regulations do not allow them to donate to anyone, unless they arebusiness partners. I went to Kroger and they were willing to donate water bottles to myfundraiser tournament. One of the most important, and by far, most difficult things I did, wasorganizing teams. Most people would not fully commit to coming to the tournament. Peoplewould tell me they were interested, but never contacted me back. Another problem wasextracurricular activities that most students had on weekends. Because of these problems I had tokeep in contact with these people every day. I emailed them and called them to know who wasgoing to play in the tournament. After finally getting four teams together, I scheduled a date forthe tournament. It was February 11th. I woke up on the day of the tournament and looked outside.To my dismay the trees in my front yard were swaying and bending beneath the powerful winds.I knew I could not have a Frisbee tournament with those weather conditions, so I postponed it tothe next weekend. After this alteration, two teams dropped out of the tournament. Because ofwinter break being the following week, people were already leaving for vacation. I had to comeup with something quick. The day of the tournament arrived and my quick thinking saved theday from turning into a disaster. I split the players into three teams instead of four, because of thelack of people that came. At the end of the day we had raised $110 that we donated toSamaritan’s Purse, a Christian fundraising organization. Even though many problems arose during my project, I learned how to manage a bigevent, how to contend with unexpected situations, and how to speak with adults in the businessworld. This experience has showed me that I am an achiever. I have learned that no matter what
surprises or problems arise, I work around them and plan for the worst. My work habits throughthis project have been shown. One of my bad habits is procrastinating, but because of my hardwork ethic and organizational skills I finished what needed to be done. I also learned how to sendformal e-mails to churches and businesses. I had to talk face-to-face with business managers, aswell as over the phone. To organize teams I created flyers to hand out to those that wereinterested. This project has confirmed my interest in coaching, and I plan to study sportsmanagement at Samford University or Clemson University. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to share my project with you. If there are anyquestions, I would be happy to answer them.