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517.332.5046 or www.mhsaa.com

First Graduating Class of Coaches Advancement Program Honored

EAST LANSING, Mich. –  June 26 – No caps and gowns, no pomp or circumstance, just the realization of having achieved the highest level of learning possible with the goal of turning that into providing better experiences in high school sports for the young people taking part in the games.

The first group of individuals to complete all six levels of the Michigan High School Athletic Association’s Coaches Advancement Program (CAP) were honored recently at the Association’s headquarters, a group of 29 people who will go down in the books as the first of many to have completed one of finest coaches education programs in the country.

CAP is a 36-hour program designed to train coaches in the many facets of coaching school sports.  It’s a program where the X’s and O’s of a sport aren’t part of the curriculum.  Rather, CAP addresses the philosophies of school sports, communications skills, legal issues, the psychology of coaching, sports medicine and first aid, working effectively with parents, teaching skills, healthy living, emotional control, and character.

The program reached 1,240 coaches during 2007-08, the majority of whom take the first two levels.  The ultimate goal is for CAP to reach the over 30,000 coaches involved at all levels of school sports, and to advance them through all six levels of programming.

“This program is based on the way people coach – face to face – imparting not only sports skills, but life skills,” says MHSAA Executive Director John E. “Jack” Roberts.  “CAP has been designed to instill the values of educational athletics into its students in a way that energizes them to go out and touch the lives of young people in a way that can never be measured in wins and losses on the scoreboard.  We’re proud of our first group of participants who have completed all six levels of the program.

CAP 08

The first group of CAP Level 6 graduates are:  Brad Amey, girls soccer coach, Saginaw Heritage High School; Justin Ansel, athletic director, Comstock High School; Larry Ash, boys basketball coach, Plainwell High School; Richard Bailey, baseball coach, Comstock High School; Douglas Barnhard, middle school football coach, Hudsonville; Dustin Cichocki, wrestling coach, Lowell High School; Jeffrey Clark, middle school coach, Schoolcraft; Gregory Corbin, Catholic Youth Organization coach, Detroit; Kelly Derocher, girls cross country and track coach, Saginaw Heritage High School; Gwyneth Evans, athletic director, Vicksburg Middle School; Bradley Geesaman, freshman football coach, Vicksburg High School; Jaime Gordon, varsity girls basketball coach, Kalamazoo Central High School; Kenneth Kubiak, junior varsity golf coach, Kalamazoo Loy Norrix High School; Linda LaVictor, athletic administrative assistant, Bay City Western High School; David Lawrence, track and cross country coach, New Boston Huron High School; Nathan Ledlow, junior varsity football coach, Vicksburg High School; Jeff Lepler, varsity swimming coach, Clinton Township Chippewa Valley High School; Ken Mohney, director of student activities, Mattawan High School; James Noble, track coach and athletic director, Saginaw Heritage High School; Kurtis Phelps, football coach, Schoolcraft High School; Gregory Rapp, junior varsity boys basketball coach, Mattawan High School; Michael Sarandrea, bowling coach and registered MHSAA soccer official, Taylor Kenney High School; Gary Senkowski, tennis coach, Saginaw Heritage High School; Fredrick Smith, athletic director, Buchanan High School; Gary Sporer, soccer coach, Cooks-Big Bay de Noc High School; William Stone, basketball coach, Fruitport High School; John Thompson, athletic director, Brighton High School; Steven Virkstis, cross country and track coach, Comstock Park High School; and Chad Yager, baseball, football and middle school wrestling coach, Mattawan Public Schools.

CAP receives significant technical support from the Youth Sports Institute at Michigan State University.   Participants receive liability insurance in the amount of $1 million per occurrence for coaching  their school team during the interscholastic season for the school year in which the coach completes a level of CAP and for the following year. An electronic newsletter is provided six times a year to those who complete six hours of training, providing pertinent articles to assist them in their daily coaching duties. Coaches who also complete a six-hour session of CAP can also receive Continuing Education Credits (CEU’s) to be used to renew selected certificates from the Michigan Department of Education.

More information about the Coaches Advancement Program, including a schedule and registration form, can be found on the home page of the MHSAA Website by clicking on Coaches.

The MHSAA is a private, not-for-profit corporation of voluntary membership by over 1,600 public and private senior high schools and junior high/middle schools which exists to develop common rules for athletic eligibility and competition.  No government funds or tax dollars support the MHSAA, which was the first such association nationally to not accept membership dues or tournament entry fees from schools.  Member schools which enforce these rules are permitted to participate in MHSAA tournaments, which attract approximately 1.6 million spectators each year.


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