A full-circle moment for Hunter Huss coach

  • Troy Phillips

    Hunter Huss basketball coach experiences a full-circle moment

    Troy Phillips will be the first to tell you that he’s a lifelong Huskie. Now the head basketball coach at Hunter Huss High School, it’s a full-circle moment for him as he celebrates returning to his alma mater and coaching where he graduated from in 1996. 

    “When I was a kid, I used to ask my mom every day if we could drive by the school just because I wanted to see it,” he said. “We would ride by the football field, and I would peer out the car window in awe at those players practicing, knowing I wanted that to be me one day.”

    Phillips grew up watching his cousins and other influential athletes play on the fields and courts at Hunter Huss before becoming a basketball player himself as a sophomore. He remembers sneaking up to practices and watching the basketball players when he was younger, knowing he wanted to be out there one day, too. 

    “I just wanted to grow up and be a Huskie,” he said. “I would see those guys playing on the court on Friday nights, and I would go to the Phillips Center and practice the same moves they did. They were my heroes.” 

    And now, years later, Coach Phillips is leading the boys’ basketball team to victory with the conference tournament trophy in hand and sights set on the state playoffs. He said the people, who helped shape who he is as a person, guided him to the coaching role. 

    “It’s surreal to think that I’m leading the basketball program,” he said. “It didn’t really hit me until recently how big of a moment this is for me. I could spend all day naming the people who got me to where I am now.” 

    So, what would Phillips tell the teenage version of himself playing basketball at Hunter Huss?  “Enjoy life,” he said quickly with a big smile. “Enjoy your high school years because you never get them back.”

    Phillips added, “I always tell the guys on my team that your name is all you’ve got. I always try to make sure they know they’re good enough. If you keep smiling, keep believing, and take care of your name, anything can happen. I know, because it happened to a little boy from a neighborhood just a few streets over from here. Look at me now. I’m at my high school, coaching players who were just like me.”