During Monday night’s meeting of the Union County Board of School Trustees, Will Hickson was selected to serve as Interim Athletic Director at Union County High School during the 2012-13 school year.
Hickson is currently the head coach of the varsity boys’ basketball and boys’ golf teams. He previously served as Varsity Head Basketball Coach at Jonesville High School from 2003-2007. Coach Hickson has also served as a football coach at Union County High School and Jonesville High School 2001-2010, and he currently teaches at Foster Park Elementary School.
“I am impressed with the way Coach Hickson cares for students and works with parents,” said Principal Floyd Lyles. “These are two of the most important qualities for an athletic director.”
Hickson said he is extremely thankful to the Union County School District’s administration.
“I’d like to thank the administration — Dr. Woodall, Principal Lyles and members of the school board — for believing in me and giving me this opportunity,” Hickson said. “It shows they have faith I can do the job, and that means a lot.”
A lifelong Union County resident, Hickson played sports in Union until graduating from Union High in 1991. He said he is excited about directing Union County athletics, especially since Union County athletics have virtually been a part of his entire life.
“I played sports here and coached here,” Hickson said. “The opportunity to give back is a great feeling.”
What makes a good athletic director?
“Putting the kids first and making sure they are taken care of,” Hickson quickly replied.
Hickson admitted that taking on the role of athletic director never crossed his mind until about a month ago, when he read the book, “Lead … for God’s Sake!” by Todd Gongwer.
Gongwer was a successful assistant college basketball coach before he became an author. His book centers around the character Steve Rocker, a successful high school basketball coach who is going into the most difficult season of his career. In the story, expectations are high and none of Rocker’s coaching methods are working. Rocker’s home life also reflects the problems he and his team are facing on the court. Rocker eventually stumbles upon an unlikely mentor — school janitor Joe Taylor — who seems to have the answers to all of the coach’s problems.
“Any coach needs to read that book,” Hickson said. “It looks at it from different angles. You just never know what each kid is going through each day.”
Hickson was asked about his plans for the 2012-12 school year less than 24 hours after he was hired.
“It’s still a whirlwind right now,” Hickson said. “I’m just going to take it day by day and do the best job Will Hickson can do. Doing it for the kids is the most important thing, and that’s what I’ll do every day.”