Coach of the Year: Quinton Snell, ConnallyOnce the basketball season ended, Connally coach Quinton Snell climbed into bed and hardly moved for about four days.
It had been a long and tiring year, but one filled with rewards.In his eighth season as Connally's head coach, Snell guided the Cadets to a 30-5 record , including a 19-0 start , and the program's first appearance at the regional tournament.
has added the Super Centex Coach of the Year honor to his
"A lot of times to me, my overall record doesn't mean a whole lot," Snell
said."What I like to do is schedule the best opponents so we can get ready for district. ...But I've been thinking about it, and it's like, ,Man, we won 30 games!' That's a testament to those guys who were willing to listen to anything I had to say."
In those players, Snell
found a remarkably driven and united group, and as goal-oriented a team as he'd ever had.After he
team to hold opponents to 50 points or less, the players later approached him about lowering the number to 48.
The Cadets ended up surrendering a shade over 42 a night."It's hard to explain, but there was just something about the chemistry they had and their willingness to work their tails off," said Snell, a former football player at Midwestern State.
"They actually got together as a team and said, ,We want to go undefeated.' I mean, why not? ,We want to win district.' Why not? ,And we want to go to Huntsville.' Of course, we don't go undefeated, but we went 19-0.We don't win district, but we do get to Huntsville."
Early in the season, the Cadets frequently ran past foes with an arsenal of players who could get out quickly on the break.Heading into the playoffs, though, Snell
made the savvy choice to decelerate the tempo with a spread-the-floor passing offense.
"It worked out for us," the coach said."That's not really the style we wanted to play, but we felt like that was going to help us in the playoffs.If teams were going to scout us, they were going to see that Connally
was going to get out and run.So they're preparing for that particular style and we kind of flipped the script on them, so to speak."Snell
talks a lot about one season's team building a foundation for the next.Though the Cadets will graduate some key stars, the coach believes that the 2007-08 Cadets have a blueprint for greatness.
"We made it to Huntsville, next year we'll set our goals a little higher," Snell
"D'Andre's got so many tools, and his
skill set is so advanced for a guy his
untapped potential right now."
Simmons especially enjoyed schooling opponents in the art of rejection.
"Me and my dad had a bet," he
said I couldn't average four blocks a game, but that's just what I do.I time out my blocks and go get them."
has great timing," Snell
...Coach of the Year: Quinton Snell, Connally