By BRAD KEITH
(June 21, 2016) — Huckabay has big expectations for its basketball teams, and Richie Andrews wouldn’t want it any other way.
Andrews was named boys basketball head coach by the Huckabay ISD school board last week at the recommendation of athletic director and girls coach Caleb Walls.
The new chief Indian says he doesn’t back down from lofty expectations.
“With a tradition like there is at Huckabay there comes with it a lot of expectations, and rightfully so,” said Andrews in a Tuesday morning phone interview with The Flash. “I like the feeling that we’re expected to do something big. I didn’t get into coaching to lose, so the competitive side of me accepts the challenge. The people in Huckabay expect to win and that fits right in for me.”
Walls was impressed with Andrews from the start of the hiring process.
“I think he’s a good fit with a great background as far as basketball is concerned,” said Walls. “I believe he’s somebody the kids will feed off of and buy into and somebody we all will enjoy having become a part of the Huckabay community.”
Andrews, a 2007 graduate of Tarleton, comes to Huckabay after two years at tradition-laden Peaster, where he was varsity assistant and a junior high coach. He previously spent a year at Azle, and before that a year at Pollok Central just outside Lufkin. He began his coaching career at Glen Rose Middle School after working at Glen Lake Camp in Glen Rose.
“The plan for me has always been to impact kids in a positive fashion,” Andrews said. “Coaching is just the avenue through which I’m doing that.”
And now, he’ll be doing it in Huckabay, where Walls says Andrews will also teach physical education and history. Andrews is well aware he will be expected to wear many hats at the northern Erath County school.
“Obviously there are a lot of responsibilities for a head coach at a small school like Huckabay, but that’s nothing new to me,” Andrews said. “At Peaster I would have morning practices with the middle school, then athletic periods during the school day with both the middle school and high school kids, and of course, varsity responsibilities and games after school.
“I believe my experience to this point has prepared me well for what is ahead,” he added. “It’s a daunting task and I don’t want to disappoint anyone, but I think I’m up to the challenge.”
Andrews says on Wednesday he drove to Huckabay and spent part of his time there just sitting in the old gym thinking about the tradition and history behind the school’s basketball programs.
“I just sat there thinking about all the history, it’s phenomenal,” he said. “I’ve long been aware of their success. I watched Huckabay play some when I was at Tarleton and Glen Rose. so I know how excited the community is about basketball and I can’t wait to be a part of it.”
Jenna Andrews, the coach’s wife of two years, hires teachers at Fort Worth ISD. Richie Andrews has two sons living in Glen Rose – Walker, 11, and Preston, 9.
“I’m excited about that old gym and the atmosphere that I know surrounds basketball in Huckabay,” Coach Andrews said. “I’ve met some of the guys and can’t wait to work with them. I know in rural schools you get hard working kids, and I want them to understand that I will be a hard working coach.”