Coach’s Corner: Matt Cockrell, Collins’ High Golf

Coach’s Corner: Matt Cockrell, Collins’ High Golf

Louisville Orthopaedic Clinic is proud to sponsor the weekly “Coach’s Corner”, featuring a high school coach from women’s athletics in the local community. Since 1974 the Louisville Orthopaedic Clinic has served the local area for orthopaedic problems and musculosketal issues. The sports medicine program has team physicians for local high schools which provide sports physicals and urgent care for athletes. Click here for details on SPORTS INJURY URGENT CARE.

This week’s “Coach’s Corner” feature is Matt Cockrell. He is the head coach of the Collins High girls’ golf team. If there is a coach you’d like to read about, email suggestions to ashli@louisvillewomensports.com.

1)What is your history with athletics in your personal life?

I have played golf for over 25 years – ever since I was 10 when my uncle came by our house and allowed us to hit his Callaway Irons in our front yard in rural South Central Ohio. Golf was something completely unknown to us farm kids. Golf hooked me; I was ALL IN! I played on my high school varsity golf team for all four years. Although I did not play competitive golf in college, I did play intramurals and on my own free time. I worked in the golf industry for three years as a PGA Assistant Golf Professional at clubs in Indiana, Virginia and South Carolina.

2) How did you obtain your current coaching position?

Last school year, I applied for the art teacher position at Collins High School and the head girls’ golf coach position as the same time. This year is my second year at Collins serving in both capacities. This is my sixth year teaching art and my sixth year coaching golf.

3) Who do you look up to?

I look up to my Uncle Mike Free, who started me out in golf. As a minister and school bus driver, he was so well-respected and would do anything for anyone.

cockrell324) What are two primary goals you have for your team this season?

The top goals for our team that I have is to qualify for the state tournament.

5) What is the hardest part of coaching for you?

The hardest part about coaching is balancing both school, practice/matches, and my personal life.

6) What qualities do you hope to instill in your players that they can take with them to their families, careers, and society?

To hold themselves to a higher standard. To have integrity and do the right things above all else. To be focused and committed with everything they do.

7) How do you motivate your best athletes to work even harder?

I have my best players practice alongside the younger, less-experienced players to serve as a motivator and mentor for them. My more experienced players realize that they are setting the standard of excellence within the team, not only at practice and matches, but at school and elsewhere.

8) What is one mistake you’ve made in your coaching career, and what did you learn from it?

To not take myself so serious. When we are in season, from time to time I get too serious with practice time and just before our matches. I have to remember that these are kids and sometimes we just need to loosen up, relax and have a little fun.

9) How do you handle criticism from parents, athletic director, the media, and others?

I don’t have an issue with that here in Shelby County. I receive nothing but support and guidance.

10) What is the greatest philosophy you live by?

As an art teacher and a coach, I try to keep in mind that I am inspiring the next generation and preparing my students and players for greatness!

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