If the sun seems to be shining a little brighter on Jonesborough these days, perhaps it’s just a reflection of a better outlook for David Crockett’s athletic programs.
The Pioneers have enjoyed successes here and there in the past, but there’s rarely been such a buzz — even to the point of mentioning state tournament dreams — as the one emanating from the community these days. The biggest reason for it is because of new head coaches in football (Jeremy Bosken) and basketball (John Good).
Crockett athletic director Josh Kite said the excitement is “absolutely” part of the landscape.
“First of all I want to start off by saying thanks to superintendent Ron Dykes and principal Andy Hare, for helping make this happen,” said Kite. “They worked countless hours to assure coach Bosken and coach Good could be here.”
Spring football provided evidence of an improved atmosphere, said Kite.
“They had an unbelievable spring,” he said. “I think we had 600 people at the spring game against South Greene. Everybody has been receptive to what each coach has been doing. They’ve been working extremely hard and the numbers are up.
“Let’s be honest, we have to turn it around. Our seasons have not been up to par.”
In the past, Crockett fans seemed to get excited just to be part of the regional picture. However, sights are being set a little higher these days, especially for basketball.
“If we made the regional in the past, we felt like we had done something,” said Kite. “We haven’t even had a game under coach Bosken or coach Good, and we’re already talking about going to a state tournament.
“Not to take anything away from the coaches in the past; they worked extremely hard. But when we got coach Bosken and coach Good on board, we’re maintaining guys in the weight room and everything leading up to the first game is on queue. Something good is going to happen, and I’m glad to be a part of it.”
Kite said the biggest thing that needs to happen before the football or basketball seasons is for the community to give their sincere support to the programs.
“I just feel like everybody in the community needs to buy into coach Good and coach Bosken’s philosophy, coaching and teaching,” said Kite. “They’ve been around first-class guys. They have the right philosophy. I just hope everyone gives these gentlemen a chance. What they’ve already done is a step in the right direction.”
Good has already taken his team to Wofford and Oak Ridge for camps. He said the players performed well against really good competition.
Kite said he likes what he sees from the basketball players’ enthusiasm.
“I see those guys get off the bus and see how they are communicating and smiling and laughing,” said Kite. “Everybody is just hyped up about things. It’s just a good atmosphere down here right now. I go down to lock things up and it’s almost dark, and we’ve still got kids running and playing. It’s just a good feeling.”
Kite said he likes the way Bosken and Good organize things and plan ahead.
“Both of them are looking beyond this season and looking toward the future,” said Kite. “Hopefully they will be down here for a long time.”
One of the things Crockett could gain from this is improved programs across the board, boys and girls. Kite agreed that a winning attitude can be contagious.
The only down note to the excitement is some potential funding issues for football.
“With all this participation, I don’t know if we will have enough helmets or uniforms to supply these kids,” said Kite.
Competing in the New Balance Nationals Outdoor meet, Science Hill graduate Hunter Boone didn’t have his best day.
Just a few weeks after authoring a 46-foot, 7¼-inch leap to win the Class AAA state championship in the triple jump, Boone’s best effort in the national event was 41 feet, 11¼ inches. He fouled in his other two attempts, finishing 29th in the 30-man field.
Jeremiah Green of Tampa, Fla., won the event with a jump of 52 feet, two inches.