BAXTER SPRINGS, Kan. — “It started when I was about six years old. We won our first peewee state [championship], and I loved that feeling of winning. When I was in ninth grade I knew I wanted to be a coach,” says Matt Mims.
It’s a dream he has achieved, as he is now the head coach of the Baxter Springs football program.
While he coaches, he wears a championship ring he earned while coaching in Alabama.
Mims says, “Baxter’s only been to one state championship and they lost in 1986, [so I wear it to] give these guys something to look forward to and something to want in their future.”
Though some schemes and formations may have changed, it’s the newfound energy Coach Mims brings to the team that has players excited for the season.
Brayden Barnard, senior left tackle, says, “We have more energy this year than we did last year. It’s different coming with a new coach. He’s young. He sees the world like we see it more.”
Kain McCully, senior tight end, says, “He’s [really] hyper. He’s got all kinds of energy all the time. He makes us have more energy, hypes us up.”
Mims says, “Kids feed off your energy, and as you can tell our kids are very excited because our coaches are excited so it’s little things like that we try to do.”
This energy has sparked higher expectations for the team this year.
McCully says, “I hope we win our homecoming game. I’m ready for senior night, it’s my last game, last season. I’m trying to make the best of it.”
Barnard says, “I want to end the year, the season on a win. Not the season but my senior year. On a win.”
The Lions open their season on September 4 against Riverton.