By JAMES BROWN
Glasgow Daily Times
Up a ramp through the back door of Edmonton
Elementary was how one would get to TimMc-
Murtrey’s office during the quiet times of summer.
That’s where I found him near noon nearly nine
years ago when he decided to return to coaching after a
McMurtrey, a legend in his nativeMetcalfe County,
had taken a break from coaching the boys’ basketball
team to become principal at the elementary school.After
three years, he returned to the program because,
even though he coached golf, tennis, drove a city bus
route and was principal, basketball was his first love.
He had missed being on the sideline.
“Maybe I’m not right, but I’ve missed it. I just have a
passion to coach (basketball),” he told me that day in
I was there to hear the story and to tell readers of the
Glasgow Daily Times about his comeback.
Having never been to the elementary, I wandered
through the slight maze that was the back entrance to
the school and found his office area.
At what must have been the secretary’s
desk sat a young girl with dark
hair.McMurtrey introduced me to
his daughter, Tayler, as she sat there
coloring or reading, I don’t clearly
We stepped into his office, where
there was a book shelf upon which
were team photos, University of
Kentucky memorabilia and a basketball
upon which was painted “1985,
4th Region, CHAMPS.” That basketball
Murtrey’s proudest moment as a coach when hisMetcalfe
won its only regional title in boys’ basketball.
As I sat in Barren County High’s gymThursday
night, taking notes as Tayler, now a senior, tried to lead
theMetcalfe Lady Hornets to an upset ofAllen County
in the first round of the Girls Fourth Region Tournament,
I flashed back to that day.
Tim retired from coaching the Hornets at the end of
last season in order to be a father in the stands supporting
his “little” girl during her final year in high school.
Tayler did all that she could to extend her high school
basketball career, scoring 18 points and, frankly, outplayingAllen’sMorgan
Rich, the Fourth Region’s player
of the year. In the end, Holly Robinson hit a jumper
in the final second of the game to lift the Lady Patriots
to victory, ending the Lady Hornets’ season and
Tayler’s run as a high school basketball player. She was
one of two seniors on the team—Riley Eskridge being
the other—and they both had played varsity basketball
since they were in the eighth grade.
Brad Bonds, head coach of the Allen County girls’
team, praised both of those seniors and said their effort
and leadership was a big reasonMetcalfe was in a position
to nearly upset his team.
Tim stood in the hallway outside the locker room
awaiting his daughter’s exit. It was obvious he had been
affected emotionally by the night. His “little” girl had
grown from coloring or reading as he went about his
duties as a principal to a young lady and leader.
If 1985 was his proudest moment as a coach on the
bench, Thursday night might have been his proudest as
a coach in the stands.
James Brown is editor of the Glasgow Daily Times. He
can be contacted by e-mail at jbrown@glasgowdailytimes.