I believe I was first to break the news that basketball coach Larry Yarbray got his walking papers yesterday. Many people doubted the validity of the post and one person actually said, ‘If true, it will come out,’ as if I didn’t already let it out.
Let me remind all readers that…
I may post stuff that’s not popular, but I never post a lie.
Reading coach Yarbray gets fired is more than enough to digest in one post. However, two other popular coaches were fired, too.
Chester High long time girls track coach AJ Thompkins and long time tennis coach Joe Providence were both let go.
AJ (shown in feature photo) has had great success in girls track. Unfortunately, track is a team sport and lately there just aren’t enough good girl athletes joining the team each year. Despite that little issue he seems to have at least one or two stars on the team each year.
School district support for boys and girls track has been iffy for some time and AJ has started his own track club which is loaded with very good girl athletes. That could be part of the reason for his firing.
Coach Joe Providence may be one of the most unknown coaches in the school district and has had the most incredible accomplishments. As tennis coach, he has taken a couple girls from never holding a racket all the way to the state championships.
I owe coach Providence a lot of credit for shaping the direction of the Chester Spotlight Paper and the Chester City Blog.
My first few issues of the Chester Spotlight paper in 2006 were all fluff stories as I thought the city wanted to read about good news going on around town. Coach Providence called and said he had a story.
After I printed his story of not being allowed to leave his teaching post early while the girl’s tennis team hopped on buses to travel to away matches with no adult supervision and had to start their matches with no coach and no parents to watch, and that the girls had to walk from Chester High to Chester Park for practice everyday, that took the Chester Spotlight in a new direction.
More than a few people came to me and said that was the type of story they wanted to read. So, since then, I’ve been bringing the controversial issues to print thanks to Coach Providence.
The message coach Yarbray received when told of his firing was, “Thank you for your service, we’re going in a different direction.”
I’m willing to bet, a lot of supporters of Chester High basketball and probably a handful of players who are being recruited to schools outside the area will be going in a different direction, too.
Obviously, the new school superintendent had to sign off on these firings. Anyone been in touch with Dr. Juan Baughn lately?
Here’s the Delcotimes.com article on Yarbray’s firing.