After spending 21 years coaching men’s basketball in the collegiate ranks — a journey that started at Florida State in 1986 — Michael Hunt stepped away and enjoyed being a parent.
Hunt watched his two children grow up and play sports in Miami.
When Hunt, 52, was coaxed back into coaching for two years as an assistant at Miami Palmetto, where his son played and was a teammate of current NBA rookie Tim Hardaway, Jr., he realized how much he missed the game.
“It was a lot of fun and I knew that I wanted to get back into it,” said Hunt, whose two children are in college.
“It’s a chance to work with kids, which is what I like, and try to make a difference in their lives and help them develop into well-rounded young men.”
That is why Hunt is so excited to return to the sidelines as the boys basketball coach at East Gadsen High School.
Hunt takes over for Dimitric Salters, who led the Jaguars to the state tournament last year but resigned to take over as head coach at Lincoln High.
“I heard good things about the talent and the community in Gadsden County and how it gives back to the school and the team,” Hunt said.
“Every year it seems like they have enough talent to put together competitive teams. It just needs to be molded and pushed in the right direction.”
Hunt certainly remembers the area as a graduate assistant coach at FSU (1986-88) under Pat Kennedy.
Hunt also coached at Towson, both as an assistant and head coach, Tennessee, Georgia and at the University of Miami (2004-07).
Hunt believes his extensive experience at the college level will help prepare his players for their futures.
“Having been at the college level, I will be able teach them the things they will need, not just from a basketball standpoint, but the importance of grades and how to act in the community as well,” Hunt said.
“We will make it fun, work hard and hopefully the kids will have a good experience.”