How military, football and training came together for Big Blue’s football coach
BLUEFIELD, WV (WVNS) It’s not every day that all of a person’s passions line up and bring them to one place. For Tony Coaxum, his passions for football, the military and cultured young men brought him to Bluefield State.
“Discipline, attention to detail. All these little things that you learned in a military environment, and I obviously incorporated them into my career as an army officer and a lot of things that I now incorporate into my life as a coach, ”a declared Coaxum.
From an early age in Charleston, South Carolina, the military played an important role in Coaxum’s life.
“Born and raised, I grew up mainly with my mother who was herself a soldier, a real tight-knit family, kind of raised in an accord-type village. You know it takes a village to raise a child, that kind of family environment, ”Coaxum said.
Following in the footsteps of several members of his family, he decided he wanted to serve. From JROTC to West Point University and playing for their football team, to the post at Fort Bragg as an artillery officer, Coaxum said he was grateful to have had direction and leadership at a pivotal moment in his life.
He never saw the fight, but instead chose to pursue a coaching career. He spent time coaching at several different schools, but when he got the call to help rebuild Bluefield State College’s historic football program, it was a role he couldn’t refuse.
“Football is a very militaristic sport. You know you have a bunch of people coming from different backgrounds, different economic areas, different ethnicities, religions, all of those things, all around a common goal to try to accomplish. But overall it’s about getting a group of people to take care of each other, to trust each other and to understand that it is not about me, but our whole group of this. what I need to do to achieve this goal, ”Coaxum said.
Coaxum has said that being a part of the military football fraternity influences every decision he makes to this day. And as he works on game plans in his office, he’s surrounded by reminders of the decisions he’s made.
Coaxum has said he wouldn’t be the man he is today without his time in the military and hopes he can provide a similar experience to the men he trains every day.
“My biggest thing is to be in this role. I want to build this program in the same way that I have as an army football player. Being detailed, being disciplined, being responsible to the people around you, knowing that it’s not just about you, knowing that you are not doing anything on your own, all of these things help me become the leader that I am, ”Coaxum said.
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