Bainbridge’s new co-athletic directors bring coaching experience, passion to job

Published 5:36 pm Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Bainbridge wants to be competitive in all its sports, and it wants to win.

But more importantly, Bainbridge wants to teach its players and coaches how to win and go about it the right way. The Bearcats have found the right two men to make that happen.

BHS hired Scott Miller and Jimmy Harris, both former coaches with administrative experience and a passion for youth sports, to serve as co-athletic directors and encourage, guide and promote Bearcat players and coaches.

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“To be able to have the experience I needed to run a successful athletic program, I felt like both gentlemen had certain qualities that we needed to get to the next level,” said BHS Principal Roy Matthews.

Miller and Harris have more than 40 years of combined coaching experience with baseball, football, tennis and almost every other sport Bainbridge offers. Harris also served as associate athletic director in the 2000s, so is familiar with much of the GHSA territory that an AD needs to be versed in.

To make the job easier for both men and hone in on their specialties, duties will be split between them. Miller will be more marketing oriented, using social media to spread information and promote highlights, players and coaches. Harris will handle much of the GHSA requirements and student eligibility, while also being in charge of managing football games.

“Both of them will work collaboratively to make sure we get what we need to get done here at Bainbridge High School,” said Matthews.

Miller and Harris are thrilled to be involved with athletics again, and both feel the importance of sports in a kid’s life is extremely important to their development.

“I have a lot of strong feelings about the importance of it, as far as developing our students into student-athletes,” said Harris. “There is so much that they take from participating in sports. Everything from developing work ethic to learning how to interact with teammates and be dependable. They are all life skills.”

Miller called returning to athletics “like going home.” He coached Bainbridge baseball for 10 years before accepting an administrative position, and he has missed the comradery of being around other coaches and young athletes.

“That part of it excites me,” said Miller. “Just to be able to encourage them, support them in their efforts. A coach is one of the most influential people in a kid’s life. I just want to come alongside our staff and encourage them and support them and help them be successful in any way I can.”

Miller admitted being a high school coach can feel a little isolating at times, particularly during the heat of the season. A big part of Miller and Harris’ duties are to provide Bainbridge coaches with the support, encouragement and materials they need to succeed.

Miller already looks forward to more professional development opportunities with Bainbridge’s athletic staff.

“Part of it is, somebody has to coach the coaches,” said Miller. “I think with that experience, we have to come alongside our coaches and provide some professional development and encouragement.”

Miller and Harris ask the community to help as well, and it’s as simple as attending athletic events at BHS.

“We have so many kids that come from all corners of the county,” said Harris. “Sometimes it goes unnoticed, particularly on the minor sports. But those kids really appreciate folks coming to watch them perform, and it channels their productivity. The more fan support we can get, the better off the school, the teams and the community will be.”

Miller and Harris thanked Matthews and the Decatur County Board of Education for giving them this opportunity.