Thu, Oct. 25, 2012 - [Men's Basketball]
Thanks to Charles Richards and Brent Baker for this report
WEATHERFORD, Texas -- Weatherford College has announced the promotion of Larry Holman from assistant coach to head coach of its men's basketball team.
Athletic Director Bob McKinley coached both the women's and men's teams in the 2011-12 season, and said he's happy to turn the reigns of the men's team over to Holman."Larry's ready, he's paid his dues," McKinley said. "I couldn't have asked any more from Larry for how he's helped me over the past year. He's more than qualified to take over these responsibilities, and I'm really happy for him and for Weatherford College."
The college made the announcement on Sept. 30.
McKinley will continue to serve as head women's basketball coach and athletic director.
Holman, 36, began coaching at WC in the fall of 2008. The Oklahoma City native played basketball at Atlanta Christian College, and has also coached at Sul Ross State University, the University of Texas at Dallas and Plano East Senior High School.
"I feel very blessed," Holman said. "I'm honored follow in the footsteps of folks like Coach McKinley, Mark Osina, Betty Jo Graber and others as a head basketball coach at Weatherford College."
Holman is also a full-time kinesiology instructor for WC. He earned his bachelor's degree in business from Langston University and a master's degree in education from Sul Ross.
Holman had a revelation 10 years ago. He had a good job as a manager at a major pharmacy, but he knew what he really wanted to do.
"I wasn't fulfilled. I went to my boss and said, `I want to be a coach and teacher," Holman said.
That was in 2002. So he left the Hurst-Euless-Bedford area and headed north to Plano to begin the journey that eventually brought him to Weatherford College five years ago as an assistant men's basketball coach.
After only a year at Plano East, he took his first college job as an assistant at Sul Ross State University in Alpine. He stayed there long enough to get his master's degree in 2005 and returned to the metroplex as assistant women's basketball coach and head women's golf coach at the University of Texas-Dallas.
"I must have really wanted to coach bad, going all the way out there, but it was a good learning experience," Holman said of Sul Ross. "As for UT-Dallas, I think that was good for me also. Basketball is basketball."
As devoted as he is to coaching, Holman is even more devoted to his family -- daughters Tamia and London and wife Michelle. So when Tamia was born, he took a short break from coaching in college to adjust to fatherhood.
"I wanted to be with her a little more, but I was still coaching at a middle school in Irving," he said.
An opportunity to do some college teaching led him to Weatherford--which in turn led him to his current position in 2008.
"I knew Weatherford had a couple of adjunct teaching positions in the kinesiology department," Holman said.
"Then I stopped by the gym and talked to [former WC men's coach] Dave Donnelly. We talked about an hour, and the next thing you know, here I am coaching again. I just missed being at a higher level. I love the game and being at the college level."
Holman, born and raised in Oklahoma City and a graduate of Langston University near OKC, proudly proclaims his allegiance to the University of Oklahoma as a fan.
"Yes, sir, I am a Sooners fan," he said with a smile. "I love OU."
But in the short time he and Michelle have been in Weatherford with their family, they have grown to love the community and college as well.
"I haven't stopped smiling since I got here," Holman said. "My wife and I just sit there sometimes and talk about how great Weatherford is."
Donnelly left Weatherford College after the 2010-2011 season, and both the men's and women's programs came under the tutelage of McKinley, who for years coached only the women with much success (over 30 years in the regional tournament).
Holman said working with one of the winningest coaches in college basketball (over 750 wins) has been a boon to his own aspirations of being a head coach someday.
As do many hard-working assistants, Holman plugged along. The days and weeks often were long, like last season when the schedule included a road trip to Snyder, back for a day of practice, and then heading the other way to Tyler.
And then there's the recruiting, which is even more of a constant process at a two-year school.
"I like the challenge of it all, having to go out and recruit and then getting them prepared to play," he said. "You always want to learn from it and do better next year. "Among the many things I've learned is, you have to recruit character."