MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Many say experience is the best teacher, so how do the new (young) coaches of the Melrose High School football team feel about the season ahead? Believing that their youth is an advantage, these coaches feel that they have all they need to build a great program on and off the field for years to come.
“Just because you’re a young team doesn’t mean that you’re a bad team," D-line coach Kyle Hurt said. "You just have to step up and play that night."
Head coach Derrick Bobo is experiencing his first year at the helm of the Melrose High football team.
“Being young you can always relate to the guys, so for me, I try not to be their friend but I always try to be someone they can look up to," Bobo said. "I have to watch the things that I do and watch the things that I say. I have to watch how I carry myself.”
Before coaching, Bobo played football at both the University of Memphis and Jackson State University.
His assistants have similar backgrounds. Kyle Hunt played for Mississippi State and Latarius Brady also played for the U of M.
All three grew up here in Memphis and all three returned with the same mission in mind.
“I was blessed to have a group of men foster me and kind of mentor me so in that process it was kind of a no-brainer for me to return to the city and give everything I got to these young men,” Bobo said.
With only nine seniors on a team of 46, Bobo, Hunt, and Brady feel they are building a program of not just skilled athletes but community leaders.
“I think it was simply understanding that 'Hey, guys if you don’t want to listen to us or be a part of what we’re doing we can't co-exist with each other,'” Hurt said.
Coach Bobo said that the team is trying to use football to give everyone on the team better opportunities to better their lives.
“You give me great effort, and my coaching staff is going to come together and give you everything we got and put you in the best opportunity to win," Bobo said.
Despite their youth, coach Bobo said he has a team full of winners, for this season and the season’s following.
“Everybody likes a winner," Bobo said. "Losing sucks, so I’m preaching to my guys that 'Hey, if you want to be a winner, just do the little things right.'”
Melrose is set to host White Station Saturday, August 20th to kick off week one.