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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Chris Young- GHS Grad Turned Parent

I am branching out a little. I thought it would be interesting to get the perspective of someone who was a GHS student and now has a GHS student-athlete. Knowing how willing Megan Young is to express her opinions, I thought Megan's mother Chris would be a good candidate.

John Thiel was finishing his last year as coach when I student taught at GHS in 1973. The three strongest, most demanding coaches/teachers at GHS at that time were John Thiel (the basketball coach), Sally Rynott (band director), and Bev Rosine (cheerleading coach). All three of them ran a tight ship and demanded excellence. 

Chris Young was a basketball cheerleader (long after 1973) for Bev Rosine. Her perspective on her experiences at GHS, changes in GHS thru the years, and dealing with an athletic daughter are enjoyable to read. 

You attended and graduated from GHS. How do you see GHS as different from when you attended? 

GHS is more structured and strict which now that I am 46 years old I think is a great thing.  We had open lunches and although I was not one of them there were many students who would choose not to return after lunch.  Obviously, drug testing was not in place then and smoking in the bathrooms was common.

Weren't you a cheerleader for Bev Rosine. Would you agree that she was probably one of the most demanding coaches that GHS has ever had? The cheerleading squads were considered the best in the state. What were some of the things she did or required to make the squads so successful?

I was a cheerleader for Mrs. Rosine.  She was terrifying.  She demanded precision and a lot of practice.  We used to have to weigh in periodically.  She didn’t allow standing around during a game.  No gum.  NEVER lean against the gym wall.  NEVER practice a cheer in front of the crowd. If we couldn’t do a routine right we didn’t do it. We worked hard.  I am sure some of her methods would not be considered politically correct today but she did produce some excellent squads. I do remember her pulling my hair when she felt I wasn’t keeping my head back far enough in a walkover. Luckily,   I survived without too much emotional scarring.

Didn't she have a rule that cheerleaders could not hold hands with their boyfriends at school? Did you break the rule?

I don’t specifically remember that one but I probably broke it.

What were some of the most exciting games when you were in high school?
I remember the 1980 girls basketball team was very good and I wanted to go to the last game they ended up playing but didn’t because I had a newly broken leg and fear of bleachers on crutches.

I remember more of the players than the games.  Jack Bednarcik was always fun to watch and great at getting the charge call.  Clay Britton, Mike Owens, Mike Yeager, Eric Johnson, Byron Thierry etc.  I saw many great games from about 1970 on because we had season tickets.  

What was your best class in high school?

Mrs. Owens Health Occupations was the most useful class I had.  I suppose I should say Business Math because my husband was also in that class.  (Truly, I took it only to fill space in my schedule.)

When Megan was little, did you hope she would be a cheerleader?

NEVER.  Cheerleading was fun and great exercise for me but there is little use for that activity when you are a grown woman.  I’ve always wanted my kids to be involved in activities that they would be able to carry on as adults.  I have zero ability as far as real athletics go.  I quit playing catch with Megan when she was about 10 because it hurt my hand.  I don’t rebound well either.

Megan seems to always be on the go- student council, studying, volleyball, basketball, and softball. Has she always been that way? Does it ever get to a point where you have to tell her to slow down?

Megan has always been that way.  The only thing I have encouraged her to give up was piano lessons and that was because she had no time to practice and I got tired of paying for missed lessons.

After I had Megan in class, it is clear she is not shy about expressing her opinion. She seems to be very aware politically, who in the family does she get her activism from?

Both Bill and I are pretty opinionated people.  We have encouraged Megan to be aware of what goes on in the world. 

Megan is not the tallest or the fastest kid (I don't mean to be insulting of your daughter), but obviously she works so hard and plays so hard. As she was getting involved in jh and then at the start of hs, did it concern you that you thought she might be doing something she couldn't be successful in?

After the tough games, what is your approach around Megan? 


What has been your favorite game since Megan was in high school?

So many.  The game when Megan was a sophomore and they beat UT. Sadee hit a buzzer beater 3 that tied the game and then they went on to win.  Another all time favorite was a junior streak game at the Macomb Tournament We were playing Knoxville and the Knoxville fans were cheering ecstatically because they thought they finally beat us and Jamie hit a huge 3 at the buzzer and we won.  Of course beating Moline was also  a beautiful thing.  I have a feeling the best is yet to come!

You had Mr. Allison as a junior high teacher? Do you think he is one of the most remarkable 70 year olds you know?

Mr. Allison was a lot of fun but he also knew how to push my buttons.  He would tell me I was “getting huffy” and that  really ticked me off.  I had him at the end of the day and one time he let me leave about 5 minutes early because I knew the singer of the song on the radio was Jackson Browne.  I think that started my love of music trivia.  I am certain he is not 70 yet because that would mean I am old too.  He once bet us we could not guess his middle name.  He was right but once I learned it I have never forgotten Wetzell.

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