Kaley May teaches life lessons in her transition from Indiana All-Star player to Southport girls’ basketball coach
By Nicole Davis
In a new area where no one knew her name or her background, Kaley May said she was thrilled to begin fresh with her first basketball coaching job at Southport High School.
A former Indiana All-Star at Avon High School and a four-year All-Horizon League Academic Honoree at on a full basketball scholarship at Butler University, the 23-year-old said she was ready to move onto a different role in basketball.
“I always knew I wanted to go into coaching. I wanted to pursue the high school level because I wanted to build ball players from the ground up,” May said. “Now that I’ve started, I love it as much as I thought.”
When a position teaching Geography and History opened up at Southport, May said she was glad for the position that was still close to her home, but outside of her area enough that she wasn’t recognized. Since August, she says she has worked hard to earn the respect from players and other coaches as assistant coach for girls’ varsity and head coach for Junior Varsity. The JV team is currently 8-7. May said she knows they can do better, and she is continuing to learn what motivates players while the girls learn the game.
“I’ve enjoyed earning the trust and respect and becoming the coach I wanted to be,” May said. “I’ve learned a lot through my colleagues and other respectable coaches. I try to focus on what personality and focus I want to have as a coach. I try to communicate with my players so we can build an honest cohesion of the team. As a player I wanted to know what my coaches thought, so I thought I owed that to my players.”
Along with coaching basketball, May said she teaches life lessons that go hand-in-hand. She emphasizes communication because working with people is a life skill that needs to be taught in high school. She says basketball is a tool for many great values; none of them can measure up without communication.
Many of these lessons, May said she learned from her family. Coaching is in her blood. Her grandfather, Kenny Cox, was State Championship coach at Ben Davis High School. Her dad, Brian May, was one of Bud Wright’ assistant coaches at Sheridan High School, where they won several state championships.
“I always enjoyed looking at the game in a more fundamental way and analyzing team chemistry,” May said. “I think that’s attributed to my coaching background in my family. I always had a desire to help players reach their full potential in basketball.”
May said she will miss competing, but she is excited to continue taking the lessons she learned and experiencing them with the high school girls. With only two games left to the season, May said she wants to continue learning as a coach to someday start her own basketball program. Her main goal is helping the players better themselves to they can compete against the best.
“I try to stress the importance of living in the moment and not taking anything for granted because you don’t get those years back,” May said. “Once your career is over, you miss all the little things you took for granted- your teammates, being under the lights, shooting – those are memories you’ll never forget.”
You must be logged in to post a comment.