West named WHS athletic director

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By Matt Birkholtz

After 29 years in coaching, T.J. West is taking a new adventure, as he was named the Williamstown High School athletic director for the upcoming 2011-2012 academic year.

Being an athletic director has been on his mind in the past for West, but the timing wasn’t the easiest for him.

“I hadn’t retired yet and didn’t have the time for it, but now I am and I’ve been wanting something more to do and have the time for it now,” West said.

Assistant principal Todd Dupin, opened the position up to focus primarily on the academic side of WHS, but will assist West in the transition process.

“I have been doing two jobs for four years and felt like maybe somebody else could give that job more time and I would have more time to do academic stuff as the assistant principal,” he said. “I have been doing that for three years and was athletic director the last year I was a teacher.”

The pressure of handling both duties, it caused Dupin to reassess his responsibilities as an assistant principal.

“When you do multiple positions like a lot do around here, I just felt somebody could give that more and my services could be used in a different capacity,” he said.

West’s first duties as athletic director was posting the softball head coaching position he resigned from after last season.

With West in the position, Dupin’s advice for West is to get associated with other athletic directors in the area and that he will assist West with the work needed to be done as the athletic director.

“You find directors that have been in the field long and know the tricks of the trade like when reports are due to KHSAA,” Dupin said. “That is why I felt that it was fair to the next person that filled the position to be there by their side and help them out. It isn’t like I know everything about the position, but I know how to file reports and help him bounce off ideas about supervision.”

As far as setting goals as the athletic director, West wants to make sure that Williamstown is playing to its potential.

“The main thing in a small school is to be competitive and have good people as coaches here to get them to the next level,” he said. “We have the coaches to do that and I am fortunate to work with them. I want our sports to be competitive and do their best and that is all I can ask them to do.”

One difficulty that West pointed out about Williamstown athletics struggles in sports is the size of the school.

“This is a small school. You never know with a small school,” he said. “You could prosper or you can’t. We are at a disadvantage being a small school because we don’t have the people like Grant County has to pick from. Our athletes are competitive and that says a lot for them. Knowing going into the game being an underdog, it shows that they never give up. That says something about the athletes at this school.”

West said he appreciates WHS administration for having faith in him for this position and is looking forward to getting his feet wet in the position and is thankful for having Dupin helping him.

“It’s great and couldn’t think of anyone better to have,” West said. “We work well together and have known each other for years. We are not only business colleagues, but also friends. It’s always nice to have someone you can work with.”

As for the school year just under a month away, West is getting things in order for the upcoming season.

“We have to get the concession stands ready and make sure you have gate workers and have the officials for the game,” he said. “Just making sure you have everything ready to go for that first game.”

Dupin said the coaches have been real positive about West being the athletic director.

“I haven’t heard a negative response,” he said. “They encouraged us to look at him and thanked me for him getting the position. Everybody loves him. It will be a great fit for him and for the school.”