ENID — Coleman’s mentor was the late Harvey Griffin, who coached both football and track at Enid and Chisholm. He was a student teacher and coach under Griffin in the spring of 1980 before graduating from Oklahoma State University where he ran track.
Coleman got his philosophy of football players learning how to compete from track from Griffin.
“I’ve learned a lot from him,’’ Coleman said. “He let me have the distance runners, so I was thrown into the water pretty quick. He always emphasized the minor details and how important they were.
“He just didn’t say go do it. He showed you how to do it and how he wanted it done. It’s important for an athlete to know how to do it You can’t spend all your time talking, but I think it helps them and their confidence to know what you’re trying to accomplish as a coach.’’
Coleman, while a distance runner, taught himself every event in track so he could coach it.
He enjoys his job as much as he did in the early 1980s.
“I don’t have as much energy as I used to,’’ Coleman said. “I get a little more tired, but I enjoy it and I’m doing to do it as long as I can. I just liked to be hooked up to it. I don’t have any hobbies. I never had something else that I would rather do.’’
That enthusiasm is fueled by Chisholm’s improvement. The Longhorns went from 1-9 to 5-5 last season.
“On the first day of football practice last year, it didn’t look like anybody could run,’’ Coleman said. “I’m seeing changes around here. It looks like we can run a bit now. My only complaint is we don’t have that many big linemen. When I was at Watonga, Chisholm always had those big old linemen.’’