For new Coupeville High School girls basketball coach Scott Fox, developing good players is important but developing good people is paramount.
“Obviously I would like to win as many basketball games as possible, but I would also like to see the kids mature in ways off the court,” he said.
“I’m hopeful that the kids will take away life skills learned through basketball,” he added. “Teamwork, preparation, accountability, responsibility and commitment are the basis for our program. When a student finishes high school, my hope is that they will be prepared for the challenges in life.”
Fox, who coached the Coupeville boys C team last winter, takes over the girls program from David and Amy King, who resigned last year after many years of working with Coupeville athletes.
Fox grew up in Long Beach, Calif., and was an all-league basketball player at Millikan High School. He earned a scholarship to play at Long Beach City College and then at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.
“I was very fortunate to grow up in Long Beach because that was the Jerry Tarkanian and Lute Olsen era,” Fox said. “I ended up playing for coaches who played for those two and passed on the game knowledge and strategy to us. I just pass on the same information that I learned to my teams.”
After college he was an assistant high school coach for several years in the Long Beach area before beginning a 30-year career as a firefighter in 1988. He retired as a captain in 2017, but not before returning to high school coaching from 2004-2009.
A fellow firefighter retired on Whidbey Island and suggested Fox do the same.
“I told him it’s too cold, too grey, too wet, etc. He said, ‘You’d be surprised.’ So Susan and I came up that next month to visit, and we were hooked once we rode the ferry across,” Fox said.
Now in Coupeville, Fox wants to pass down his passion and knowledge of basketball to Central Whidbey athletes.
“This is a great community that I represent and this is my way of giving back to this town.”
“Having spent 30 years in the fire department, I realized that nothing is free or handed to you,” he added. “Hopefully I can make a positive impact on my players’ lives.”
Fox will stress academics and community service with his athletes.
“Students know from day one that they will not play on my team if their grades are not satisfactory,” he said. “We offer daily study hall and I have random grade checks to keep them from letting their guard down.
“We also believe in giving back to the community…We represent the school and town of Coupeville all the time and this is something that means a lot to all of us.”
Fox wants to develop a strong program from the elementary school through high school.
“There seems to be a good foundation already developed and I would like to expand on it,” he said. “I want the kids to realize that you can work extremely hard in practice but still have fun playing basketball.
“Coaches can have such an impact on kids lives; I just want this to be a positive experience for all of us, and, in the end, develop outstanding people as well as basketball players.”
The Wolves will play in the Sedro-Woolley Jamboree Saturday, Nov. 30, and then play away games Dec. 3 at Darrington and Dec. 4 at Oak Harbor before hosting Orcas Island at 3:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7.