COACH OF THE YEAR, AND MORE
I don't remember who first referred to colleges athletics as the "toy department" of a University. But it's a point well taken. But at its best, college athletics can and does aspire to be more, an opportunity to learn life lessons, grow as a person and develop skills that can last as long as one lives. For the most part that can only happen when the coach involved is a person of character and integrity with the ability to connect with young student athletes in meaningful ways.
Bo Ryan deserves the Big Ten coach of the year honor bestowed on him Monday for what he accomplished on the court with this year's basketball team. But what elevates the recognition to editorial status for us is what it says about Ryan the man. This was a tough year for Ryan and his team in many ways. But in addition to leading his team to unexpected success on the court, he displayed skills as a teacher and a man that will benefit these kids far longer. We want to thank Bo for that, in addition to congratulating him on being honored as one heck of a basketball coach.