Senior Analyst, TheOldCoach.com
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The 82nd Annual Texas High School Coaches Association Convention and Coaching School for many signals the beginning of the new academic year and most importantly signals the start of another football season in the state of Texas. Several thousand coaches from across the state in all sports along with media and countless vendors will descend on San Antonio beginning Sunday for the two day extravaganza. The majority of the events will be held in and around the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in downtown San Antonio.
The marquee events for the weekend include the annual THSCA all-star basketball game which will be held on Monday night July 21 at San Antonio ISD's Alamo Convocation Center and the all-star football game which will be on Tuesday July 22 at the Alamodome. Several of the brightest stars in the state of Texas will play their final high school game on this weekend and it's considered a major honor to be chosen to play in the all-star game.
The weekend gets cranked up on Saunday morning as the THSCA board of directors meets to discuss the state of the association and issues affecting high school athletics. A major topic of discussion without a doubt will be the upcoming statewide elections in October. THSCA Executive Director D.W. Rutledge, Assistant Executive Director Joe Martin along with current president Coach Steve Warren of Abilene High and president-elect Mark Smith of San Antonio Madison all will be involved in looking at the issues facing coaches today and what impact the elections will have on coaches. One of the biggest drawing cards for coaching school is the job room as coaches looking for jobs will try and pair up with schools with open positions, it's always one of the busiest rooms in the convention center so expect plenty of traffic there!
Media and exhibitors will begin the check in process on Sunday morning as well and for the press one of the biggest prizes for attending coaching school is the annual THSCA schedule book, containing updated football schedules for the season. Sunday evening concludes with the NCAA Division I Head Football Coaches Panel, where every Division I coach in the state will sit down and answer questions from the state's high school coaches and at times those questions can be pointed and direct which makes for good entertainment.
The exhibit hall opens up Monday morning at 8am and you can bet it will be abuzz with activity as Monday is when the largest number of coaches are in attendance at one time at the convention. THEOLDCOACH will be among the exhibitors in the hall this year and we certainly are looking forward to visiting with coaches from across the state. We'll have interviews with several coaches up on the website throughout the days following coaching school!
From a football standpoint three NCAA coaches will be providing lectures on Monday as Texas HC Charlie Strong, UTSA HC Larry Coker and Arizona State HC Todd Graham will all conduct lectures on their programs to the coaches. The football advisory committee composed of head coaches from across the state will meet with the UIL Monday to discuss any potential rule changes, suggestions that need to be made and then Monday afternoon the UIL Staff will meet with coaches in their annual lecture. Smithson Valley HC Larry Hill will also be conducting a lecture on the Rangers power running game. Monday will also consist of several press conferences as each Texas FBS HC will hold a press conference along with the UIL who will field questions from the media.
On Tuesday things begin to wind down after lunch as many coaches scatter for an afternoon on the town before the football game Tuesday night. North Carolina HC Larry Fedora will conduct a lecture along with lectures from the high school ranks. Cisco HC Brent West, New Braunfels ISD AD and former San Antonio Madison HC Jim Streety and San Antonio Johnson HC Ron Rittiman will speak to their peers. THSCA will conduct regional meetings on Tuesday and the coaches will meet with TSAO for the annual rules meetings. Fox Sports Southwest will hold their annual press luncheon where they will announce their plans for TV coverage for the upcoming fall.
The convention will wrap up officially Wednesday afternoon as exhibitors will begin to close up shop and most of the coaches will head home to make final preparations for the start of the season. Coaching School in 2015 will return to Houston for the first time in several years as it has been out of the rotation for a while, as Fort Worth and San Antonio have rotated hosting duties. THEOLDCOACH will be on hand in San Antonio to bring you all the stories as the 2014 football season is right around the corner!