ArticlesBlog

Sports Highlights: February 2018

Sports Highlights: February 2018


and welcome to our February edition of
sports highlights our 26th anniversary show glad you’re with us my name is Greg Bicouvaris our program airs on Mondays at 7 a.m. 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.
weekends at 9:00 a.m. on Cox cable 47 5:17 and nn PS tv.com all powered this
month by Fazoli’s restaurants and Newport News and Chesapeake it’s a
pleasure to talk to the director of athletics Michael Allen from The
Apprentice school good to see you thanks for having me Greg appreciate it
met you at the Peninsula Sports Club event several months ago and how did you
get involved in athletics well you know I was I was raised in a sports family my
father was a high school basketball baseball coach athletic director for he
did all that for close to thirty some years so I grew up around sports and
just always had a had a desire and a passion to stand to athletics in some
form or fashion so that’s kind of what kept me in the athletic world
I guess Sports is an opportunity just like medicine or business or any other
field to branch out but to evolve as a person and as a human being as well sure
exactly you know I I knew I want to stay involved in athletics I had the
opportunity to compete collegiate Lee played basketball at the college level
down at Chowan College which is now University in North Carolina I knew I wanted
to stay involved in athletics so I pursued a coaching route, did that for
six years at the collegiate level decided to settle down a little bit start a
family so I went to the high school level and they gained a lot of valuable
experience there and just really here recently just had the itch to get back
at the college level and the opportunity at the Apprentice School presented
itself and and the good Lord worked it out for me so well Chowan’s got a
little island all to itself it’s got a pretty big name and but yet it’s got the
Carolina roots as well sure sure a lot of tradition down there you know chauhan
historically was a two-year Junior College had a lot of success especially
in the men’s basketball area and in men’s football they went for year
transitioned into four-year my first year their NCAA Division three and just
learned so much from coach Bob Burke who was
for many years and build a wonderful program just learned so much from him
from coach Jim Garrison the longtime football coach and athletic director
down there so that that definitely kept me on the path of wanting to stay
involved in athletics and they’ve been involved the CIAA correct yes hard to
get cell phone coverage down oh yeah good now there are a few times we’re
talking to Michael Allen the director of athletics from The Apprentice school
you’ve also got some Indiana roots too oh yeah yeah born and raised in Indiana
hotbed for basketball we were talking a little bit earlier about how you know
things have changed a little bit through the years but just a lot of tradition
people just eat breathe and sleep it over there and you know I missed that
this time of the year with basketball you know getting close to March Madness
here you know becoming February now but you know just learned so much
a lot of good coaches a lot of good athletes and a lot of different sports
now but we were definitely known for basketball while I was growing up tell
the public how when you were growing up especially in the 80s
how big an event Indiana basketball was well it’s just something that unless
you’ve been there it’s just hard to explain yeah I went to high school of
about roughly 300 grades 9 through 12 and it was nothing to have to 3,000
people at a game even on a Tuesday night and that alone on the weekends so you
know if you’ve ever watched the movie Hoosiers just add about 30 years to that
and that’s pretty much what it was I mean people rolled up the sidewalks and
they went to the games and you know I played a few was blessed playing a few
state tournament games of over 10,000 people so it’s just something you just
can’t just can’t really describe in depth until you’ve had a chance to
really witness it and be there firsthand and just a little tidbit my senior year
the state of Indiana set a national or it’s actually a world record for over
40,000 people at the state championship game that’s just something that not many
states can even even relate to that right we’re talking to Michael Allen the
director for athletics from The Apprentice school list which garrison
Apprentice school lot of stability among the ADs Bill Casto was there for a
long time and Keisha was there for a long time as well
you’re here now as well but there’s been a lot of transition for a lot of the
signature sports like football basketball men’s and women’s both let’s
talk about it some of the Olympic sports like wrestling they’ve lasted but
football it seems like there’s a lot of turnover what’s the status of football
right now sure well we’re we’re coming full circle
with our interviewing where we’re finalizing our new head football coach
should have that in place shortly you know but you know finding the right fit
that really understands who we are and what we’re about I mean we’re the number
one defense contractor and the in the United States for the Navy so we you
know obviously to develop and build nuclear aircraft carriers and submarines
so really just getting someone to understand that are our apprentices that
come they’re their employees first they’re employees of the company their
students second and they’re an athlete third so that eats up a lot of their
time eight hours a day Monday through Friday they’re either on the job or
they’re in class and then thankfully we get them in the afternoons but a lot of
times that’s a long day they’re worn out so you know just just dealing with some
of the uniqueness of our school it’s just not like a traditional college so
we do our due diligence and really just try to do a lot of educating on the
front end that’s something I’ve been very hands-on here and learning the
shipyard myself Keisha has been a huge resource for me
she still works in our admissions department so we’re getting the right
people there has just taken a little bit of time so we’re hoping to create a
little bit more stability right talking to Michael Allen Greg Bicouvaris
glad you’re with us there’s so many components now there’s
social media like you mentioned the kids work full-time go to school full time
nutrition is a big deal too especially with football when it’s so hot
basketballs a little bit more controlled because it’s indoors but talk about how
the kids are hydrated and fed when they’ve worked all day and then they got
to go practice too because it’s hard to do anything empty stomach right that’s
something you know we’ve really tried to focus on they they’ve done a great job
prior to me being on board just just really trying to lay the foundation of
the nutrition you know we give the guys and the young ladies some type of little
nutritional snack whether it’s chocolate milk a granola bar something
pre-practice just to keep their energy level up
because they they been sitting in class or they’ve
been on the job all day then we also try to give them you know some nutritional
supplements after practice as well so we’ve really tried to make that a focus
our associate ad Marc Tomlin has done an awesome job with that he’s kind of
spearheaded that initiative along with our head athletic trainer so we’re
really we’re really making progress there so yeah Marc’s been on the show as
well – and what’s been the biggest challenge for you getting new to the
area acclimated to the the school the business community after school the
travel for the team still can be daunting although you don’t have a
million sports travel is always an issue sure you know it doesn’t really matter
what level you’re at at the collegiate level you know travel is always gonna
play a big part in and just you know the challenges you have to deal with the
work through sometimes and you know with our princess being employees that
creates a little bit of a challenge to get them off the job early again amount
of class early but for the most part we’ve managed that I think we’re kind of
finding our true niche of when we need to get them out when we need to keep
them around you know one of our biggest challenges just not being a member of a
conference we’re actually in discussions and just just basically came through
with three other schools we’re getting ready for my own conference that’s
definitely going to help us at least for men’s and women’s basketball here in the
first couple years just consistent scheduling cut back on some travel some
of our budget constraints so we’re making progress is just taking a little
bit of time what is the status of the apprentice school with the US CAA where
does it stand in 2018 well you know the leadership Matt Sims
who is a former employee of the apprentice school he and his group have
done an awesome job I was just branding rebranding the the Association you know
of course long time standing it was the national small College Athletic
Association and as you mentioned Bill Casto one of our former ADs really kind
of took that on as a major project to try to revamp that rebrand it and it’s
growing year by year membership is at an all-time high you know our job now is
just to get a little more of the local publicity that it’s a credible national
organization and if it’s not NCAA a lot of people just don’t really understand
so we’ve got a little bit of work to do but it’s definitely a very credible and
competitive Association your family man first
businessman of course you have your person of faith too how difficult is it
to with your time your talent and your treasure as they say to be in all these
games or do you have to delegate and not try to go to as many games whether it’s
today or in the past where you’ve been in the past right well you know the high
school level it’s a little bit easy to manage you know worked in a Christian
school that was obviously a little bit easier on the weekends you know we
didn’t schedule events on Sundays a couple weeks back we had a wrestling
tournament out of Kellum high school and you know that ate up my whole Sunday but
you know you just got to be strategic I think you have to kind of pick and
choose when you delegate and when you need to be there this first year I’ve
tried my best to be it as MIT as many things as possible I’ve traveled a few
times with some of our teams getting out of state just to give my eyes of where
they’re going and and just the experiences that they have just so I can
understand a little bit more of what our prentices are dealing with and also make
some inroads you know for our institution within the USC AAA
Association so I’ve really been intentional this first year just to get
out as much as I can be at as many events as I possibly can can be that my
schedule allows me to and also still find that balance at home so it’s it’s a
challenge but we’re managing it we always talk the producer and I always
talk ray about Military College alternatives to go after high school but
the apprentice school is kind of a combination of all that where they can
get paid and go to school and learn on the job but sometimes sustaining for
four years can be difficult which is hard to juggle both sure well you know
and that’s that takes a little bit of educated on the front end you know some
people think well it’s just a trade school and if you have a young man or a
young woman that’s not a quote unquote academic type person or maybe hasn’t
done the academic workload that they need to at the level that they need to
at the high school level well they can always fall back and go to the shipyard
and go to the apprentice go well that’s not the case our academic standards are
very high I would equate them almost with the Ivy League schools I mean you
have to be very proficient in math very proficient in English and our vetting
process on the front end is it’s pretty tough to get in so we’re really trying
to do our diligence and trying to rebrand us a
little bit get our message out more locally of who we are what it really
means to come to the apprentice school but you know the opportunity to have a
job get paid continue to play collegiate sports and
really have a job pretty much waiting on you when you graduate so that’s a pretty
big so not a lot of people can can offer and during that four years everyone even
change their mind and try some other field because they’ve been there for so
long sure what our challenge is for the head coaches and it was look at your
head coaches right now for all the sports are they full-time part-time and
talk about how many assistants per okay well the only full-time head coach we
have on staff as our head football coach you know he’s pretty much deemed a
recruiter for the school and in the company so he’s full-time he has seven
assistants underneath him none of them are full-time they get paid
fairly well but the end of the day no benefits so most of our coaches hold a
hold a full-time job whether they’re a schoolteacher maybe have another side
business that they work on up until 2:00 2:30 in the afternoon then they’ll head
over to the Athletic Center and then obviously do their job there and then
they’re recruiting in the evenings and weekends men’s and women’s basketball we
have you know obviously our head coach is there neither one of them are
full-time they both have two assistants same set up baseball wrestling in golf
is a little bit different a little unique all of our current head coaches
right now our former apprentice athletes and they actually work in the yard so
you know they’re working in the yard all day and then they come over in the
evenings afternoons and evenings and in coaching their sports so you know the
big thing that I’m really focusing on is just building a family creating the
Builder way succession plans when people move on and making smooth transitions we
just came through that with our wrestling program my camp like AM rasa
which just took over from Bruce shoemaker of course Bruce is a legend in
the wrestling community Mike is a former apprentice wrestler was our head
assistant for about ten years and it was just a easy transition just to slide him
in and he’s he’s gonna be here for a long time he’s doing a great job
usually a DS at bigger schools like to have their own people then head coaches
have their own assistance how are you gonna handle that delicate situation
with the head football coach or do you control the assistants well it’s a
partnership you know I tell all of our head coaches you know you give me your
suggestions I want you comfortable and surrounded with the people that you want
to work with and the people that you trust but on the flip side of that they
also have to understand who we are they have to understand our mission are our
true philosophy and what we’re trying to accomplish in first and foremost we’re
trying to develop leaders for the company so once they understand that if
the head coach signs off on it I sign off on it
I want them surrounded by people that they trust and that they know can get
the job done so you know sometimes you have to make those hard decisions bring
new people in let some potentially establish people go but the end of the
day you want your head coaches to feel comfortable with who they’re working
with and leaves the final note on to a student or an adult watching that once
they get involved with the apprentice cooley there’s a student or as
fundraiser sure well I would definitely encourage them to go to go check out our
website just coming through a revamp of our website we’re trying to make that a
little more user friendly I definitely contact our admissions
department we work with exclusively with them hand hands-on daily
we’re out there we’re trying to get our name out we have an awesome opportunity
for people they just come check us out we’d love to talk to him very good
Michael Allen, director of athletics in the Apprentice School just getting started
and a long way to go great thank you for having me once again Greg very good my
pleasure good seeing you as well several times throughout the community – all
right folks that was Michael Allen the athletic director of The Apprentice
school David Weiner will join us next the head women’s tennis coach at
Christopher Newport as our February 2018 show rolls one stay tuned hi my name is Barbara Smith and I’m with
the Newport News public schools Department of Transportation at the bus
stop students should stand away from the road in an orderly fashion when always
be mindful of other people’s property while on the school bus students always
behave keeping their hands heads and any other objects inside the bus so as not
to obstruct the driver from keeping their eyes on the road mothers must stop
for school bus and remain stopped until the buses lights are off and begins to
move again here at transportation our number one objective is the safety of
the children you’re going to need me you’re going to
need us all of us you’re going to need our help with your water your air your
food you’re going to need our determination our compassion you’re
going to need the next generation of leaders to face the challenges the
future will bring and we promise we’ll be there when you need us and welcome back to our February edition
2018 of sports highlights hope you enjoyed our first guest Michael Allen
let’s welcome David Weiner, the head women’s tennis coach at Christopher
Newport good to see you thanks for having had to be here very good
Charlottesville roots how did you get involved in tennis yeah well I grew up
in Charlottesville my father actually was was a pro at the Boar’s Head Country
Club and sports club up in Charlottesville so I really I mean I
grew up around tennis I was playing tennis almost as soon as I could walk I
mean I was playing tennis at 3 years old and just truly fell in love with the
sport loved being around it loved everything about it and so from an early
age I was really involved in tennis and played some other sports as well but
tennis always been my passion and just kind of came from growing up around it I
think every day here we are in February with the season underway practice and so
forth and you never know about the weather at this time of the year usually
it’s cold but where do you play indoors at around here well luckily in the past
you know last couple of years we’ve had some really mild winters so we’ve been
able to get outdoors when we’re indoors we usually go into James River Country
Club and that’s been really nice for us we have a great set up with them they’ve
been very good to us so we’ve been lucky to be able to have that option to get
our indoor practice time in because sometimes you know it can be pretty
tough yeah Brian Hogg does a great job I’m sad
my mom’s turn it there for several years as well as we’re talking to David Winer
tennis today for the men and women what are the biggest challenges for
recruiting well I mean I think recruiting it’s a lot about educating
the potential athletes about the university you know Christopher Newport
is really it’s rising so fast and as it continues to rise more and more people
will find out about what an amazing University is and how many amazing
opportunities you have but I think right now a lot of the challenges for us are
just you know kind of educating potential student athletes about how
great Christopher Newport is and what type of opportunities you can have so
it’s it’s kind of a fun challenge I guess you could say really trying to
educate as many people as possible about how great seeing you is and and helping
them grow as fast as possible talk about the fall of the spring the
spring is the big season of course let’s talk about how many matches you play
home and on the road and as far as any tournaments as well
yeah well Springs you know kind of our major focus season we play approximately
you know 20 to 25 matches we try to keep them as close to 50/50 home and Road as
possible this year we’re a little bit more skewed towards the road match side
but we definitely do have a lot of really awesome home contests as well and
we do a lot of travel obviously but I would say it’s about a 50/50 breakdown
for matches and for your players as far as the level they’re at summer at 500
would talk about the different levels and forehand backhand serve which one is
better at this point as well as the fundamentals are you
still tweaking what are you doing yeah well I mean as a coach you’re always
tweaking you always want to make some improvements that can help players with
their games whether that’s you know forehand backhand serve or what-have-you
and my experience at least collegiately I would say one of the main things you
spend a lot of time working on is like transition game volleying doubles play
things that maybe you don’t get as much of in juniors for whatever reason that
doesn’t seem to be something that you’re able to do a lot of as a junior tennis
player so once we get them in collegiately we really spend a lot of
time on the net game on the doubles game how to move confidently how to move
forward confidently but you know most of our players were very lucky come in with
a really solid technical background so we don’t have spent a ton of time on
that side it’s really more of I would say a lot of doubles folks and a lot of
transition and net focus and things like that the times I played tennis I played
a lot over the years in tournaments and in high school I’ve always enjoyed the
baseline never really felt comfortable at the net what do you tell a player
that just wants to hug the baseline or one that doesn’t want to go to baseline
because sometimes it’s a gray area where they don’t want to do either one yeah I
mean that’s gonna be tough yeah I was I was definitely the same I love stay back
by the baseline I mean I would have whole matches or I wouldn’t even come to
net so I can kind of you know maybe relate to them first maybe a little bit
on that but you know I tell people that it’s about the decision that you make
and you know if you’re making the right decision and moving forward at the right
time with the right intent in mind eventually that will develop but I think
the biggest hurdle for people doing that effectively is honestly just making that
decision for whatever reason you know you feel like there’s more pressure and
you’re moving forward and things happen faster and so sometimes you can kind of
make a mess of your volley work and your network but I always tell people it’s
about the decision that you make and if you’re making the right decision to
move for at the right time eventually that’s gonna develop for you the way you
want it talk about your roster and some of the
girls that stand out yeah well we have have a very senior heavy roster this
year we have 14 players on the team eight of them are seniors we have two
singles players who have been in the national rankings and singles we have a
doubles team that’s been in the national ranking in doubles we have numerous
players who have been ranked regionally sort of a really talented squad it’s
really exciting hopefully I mean I will will will foretell a big year for us
but we’ve got a lot of depth and I think that’s probably our strength is depth of
player from top to bottom is really really strong so we’re excited how would
you compare the level of tennis in the Charlottesville area to let’s say the
Richmond area which is always very good this area is strong as well we have so
many different colleges talk about the different areas that you lived in and
compare that the tennis interest yeah well you know Charlottesville they’re
very different my time in Charlottesville you know there were
really two main hubs for tennis obviously a lot of the tenants in
Charlottesville centers around the Boar’s Head because that’s where the
University of Virginia does most of their work which is an amazing level I
mean you’ve got borderline professional tennis players there so that’s an
amazing level to be around and to be able to see men as far as down here in
the Hampton Roads area I think tennis is just a much more
popular sport for whatever reason or at least maybe in my experiences and
Charlotte so compared to here tennis has been more popular you just have a lot
more opportunity I would say for people to play a lot more places for people to
play there’s tons of options out there and they’re all really really great
options and so I think that maybe tennis is a little bit more of a way of life
for some people around here and in Richmond it’s incredibly strong the
Richmond level is is also very very good you talk about UVA you’re right there I
mean even they’ve had world-class coaches won’t class players at that
school dick Stockton even coach Virginia’s tennis team a while back
lists what is it about UVA is something in the water in Charlottesville or is
their crew ting that they’re doing well I think it’s both I mean you spend time
in Charlottesville it’s it’s an amazing place it’s beautiful the University for
sports it’s hard to not almost be addicted to just that area as well but
you know I think first of all Brian Bolland I think they’re their old
coaches now moved on I think he just did an amazing job of establishing a culture
there and once that started things just started building on
themselves and it became this amazing tennis environment for you know the
players on team obviously but also for the spectators and hopefully that’s
trickling down into juniors now I’m sure it is but hopefully that’s kind of got a
trickle-down effects that you’ll see even more tennis in that area all
because of UVA and what they started the state of tennis ATP WTA I mean how many
more years can Venus and Serena we miss plays seems like they’re the household
names it’s tough to name another woman’s player sound like it was when you know
Chris Evert was playing a Martina or Connors in McEnroe or Agassi or Chang or
Sampras and then as far as the men’s tennis it’s been a long time since an
American men is won a Grand Slam yeah you know I think we’re kind of a little
bit spoiled honestly because we’re in an era now where you’ve got Venus and
Serena and even Federer and Nadal just the way these guys dominate and I think
sometimes that may be you know as American fans we kind of project that on
to the up-and-coming talent we say okay this is what we want from them or we
expect that level of dominance but I really do think we’re gonna have some
significant I think impact players coming up but you can see them kind of
popping up here and there with some results but I think going forward you’re
definitely gonna see a lot of exciting stuff from the American tennis players
it’s there it’s just going to take some time to come out any predictions for
your 2018 P for our 2018 team I think you know we’ve got a tough road but our
goal is always to go to the NCAA tournament to do well there and I think
that’s a very realistic possibility for us so I would say that’s that’s the goal
and that’s what we’re working towards have you circled a match on your
calendar that’s tough well we we play the same conference with Mary Washington
which is up the road a little bit in fredericksburg that’s always very
important to us because only you know one of our teams gonna qualify for NCAA
so I’d say if we had the circle one that would be the one we circled but we have
a lot of tests coming up so there’s a lot of important matches for us all of
our Newport News schools as we’re talking to David wine or the head
women’s tennis coach and seeing you play tennis as well as Hampton the four
schools in Gloucester what advice would you give to a kid well I would say you
know if you love the sport seek it out find it there’s plenty of opportunity to
play and if something that you really enjoy I would say there’s a place for
every single tennis player to play college tennis and just have an amazing
experience and so I would encourage kids especially to to seek out those options
where they can play keep trying to find new and different people to play against
and eventually you’ll be able to kind of achieve those goals if college hands in
something that you want to do really interesting our
former superintendent dr. Ashby killed more her dad was an excellent tennis
player you can play well into your senior years oh absolutely you can play
tennis your entire life that’s one of the many reasons it’s such a great sport
and you can play at so many levels you know if you pick it up when you’re
young that’s great but if you pick it up when you’re a little bit older that’s
fine as well you can still find tons of tennis for you know either play and tons
of leagues and everything for you to do it’s a great sport if you last a long
time leave us with some social media how people can connect with seeing you
women’s tennis team yeah well you can follow us on facebook twitter and
instagram at cnuw tennis you can follow tennis program as a whole at just see a
new tennis so we’re on social media and always putting stuff out for people to
check out right your websites pretty active as well yes correct see a new
sports calm your schedule your roster and yeah the background and so forth
always up today very good all right David all the best to you my friend and
good luck for the 2018 and it’s getting started
spring is eternal and let’s just hope thing for the captain’s this spring is
well for your tennis team awesome thank you for having very good till it a sunny
drove as well well this all right David Weiner right there head women’s tennis
coach at Christopher Newport also Michael Allen the director of athletics
from The Apprentice school want to thank our good friends that there’s always
their entire wonderful crew that you’ll see on the credits here
led by Ray Price and company hope you enjoy our nice basketball games as well
right here in the middle of winter you never know how the weather is gonna be
in Hampton Roads so for Ray Price and the great guest I’m
Greg Bicouvaris happy February we’ll talk to you soon. you

Comment here