Nice story from the sports page: high school basketball coach, Bob Hurley Sr., is likely to earn his 1,000th victory in the next week. He is one of only three high school coaches to make it into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame.
But, when Hurley measures his own success, he thinks of the young men that he has worked with over the years, helping to teach them discipline, trust, and teamwork. He can point to the college graduates and successful adults who have come out of his program at St. Anthony, a tiny Catholic high school in Jersey City, New Jersey. As the article explains:
But his true legacy is much deeper than the lights on the scoreboard. Hurley said he would trade in those wins — every last one of them — for a chance to help more inner-city kids.
“You know what? I would give them up for one more chance with some of the kids I didn’t reach over the years,” Hurley said. “If I could have a second chance with some of those, it would be worth all the adulation.”
Hurley can certainly be proud of his victories both on and off the court. The article provides some testimony from former players and offers this overview:
Still, even with 25 state parochial titles, the victories are a small part of what he has accomplished. Hurley, 63, has been a father figure for hundreds of inner-city teenagers over the past four decades. He has placed nearly all of them in four-year colleges, most on scholarships.
Some are doctors and businessmen now. Others are lawyers and police captains. One owns a popular restaurant in Jersey City and once held a seat on the city’s board of education.
Maybe there should be a mentoring hall of fame, as well; I think Hurley would make it in on the first ballot.