Monday morning, March 3rd Stamford ISD announced that Coach Ronnie Casey would follow in the footprints of Wayne Hutchinson as the new Athletic Director at Stamford High School. Casey has served as the head coach of the Stamford High School boys’ basketball team for the last few years celebrating many playoff showings for the Bulldogs in Basketball. He also celebrated his 300th career win two years ago and has continued to rack up more wins towards the next milestone.
Casey, who has been coaching for over 22 years, attributes the Stamford edge to a few key factors: an excellent coaching staff, exemplary athletes, a strong, caring community that is unfailing in its support of its young people, mutual respect, and a passion for the game. Add it all up and the result is a confluence of variables that make Stamford a tough team to beat and a great team to be a part of. Ask Casey what gives Stamford the edge and he gives a great deal of credit to Coach Hutchinson for leading positive change within the athletics program and with hiring excellent coaches who, while competitive, care deeply about their students and athletes. While he credits his players’ natural athletic abilities, training, and hard work, he goes on to point out that community support and mutual respect between players and coaches are what elevate natural talent to great talent. For Casey, “the Number One thing in teaching and coaching is mutual respect.” It’s not really about basketball at all. It’s about an approach to life and teaching. For Casey, “if you lay down the foundation, your expectations, and what you expect of the kids, and they understand and respect that, and you let them grow and challenge them,” you have the foundation for success in basketball and beyond.
In preparing for a game, Coach Casey says sure he looks at offense and defense, at the other team’s strengths and weaknesses, and trains his players hard. “I’m real competitive. Even if it’s checkers, I hate to lose,” he says. But when it comes right down to it, Coach Casey hones that fierce competitiveness with good leadership. “Mostly we worry about Stamford, not our opponents. How we can improve as a person, as a player, and as a member of our families. And, mostly, that’s what we’ve gone by. When we go out, we’re going to go out and protect our reputation,” he says. Casey’s passion for the game is unmistakable. Ask him and he’ll tell you that for him, coaching amounts to a calling. Even as a young boy, he says, he knew it was what he would do with his life, “I fell in love with athletics, with sports, and had the privilege of learning from great coaches and mentors.” Ask him how his calling for coaching affects his approach to the game and you see ultimately it’s the source of his passion for the game and for life, “You gotta play every second like it’s the last second of your life because there are no guarantees we have tomorrow or the next five minutes. We approach it that way and our kids approach it that way.”
Monday morning Superintendent Dr. Shaun Barnett said, “I am very proud to announce that Ronnie Casey has been named the Athletic Director / Head Football Coach for Stamford High School. He will begin his duties as AD immediately. Please congratulate him when you see him. We are very lucky to have someone with his experience and dedication to SHS to take over the reigns as AD.