Without getting overly emotional, a great coach and father coaches his last game of the regular season for Rockhurst University tonight.
In short, my Dad is retiring. It is bittersweet because although I think this is an exciting new chapter for him, a little chunk of our hearts will be left on the Mason Halpin court. As my sister said, “I feel like a bit of my childhood is gone.”
We spent our winters living and dying by college athletics. Even though RU is not a huge D1 program or even a big D2 program it was our team. And you knew any given cold winter night you would make your way to 51st and Troost to smell the sweat, feel the heat of the old gym and yell at the refs. And there were good years and bad years but not only was it about the competition on the court but about watching these boys for four years and see them get an education from a great school but also from the court and my Dad. I’m sure my Dad would say he learned so much from his players as well. And even us kids would be out of town or at school or at work we would all call the next day to talk about the game or watch the internet for the scores. Many a family dinner, or a beer was drank spent talking about a player, a game or a story. My brother played for my Dad so you can only imagine the stories and the hilarity that was father/son basketball dynamic.
“Figure it out.” and “Things are never really as bad as they seam and often not as good as they seam.” “Play hard, have fun” are just a few of the lines we heard often and it was so quintessentially my Dad. Coach and Father entertwined and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I was thinking the other day how we don’t tell our kids we are proud of them enough but I think we don’t tell our parents we are proud of them at all and I want to say I’m proud of you Dad. You are not only a fabulous coach but a great father and you always coached us just enough.
Rock On. xoxo