"I do view it as a challenge." The new Head Coach of the UBCO Heat men's basketball team leaves behind a winning legacy at Red Deer College to take the helm at a program where wins have been harder to come by. But Clay Pottinger sees it as an opportunity to "do something great."
Pottinger began his coaching career at Kings University in Edmonton where the team was winning just a few games in a season, and he said he learned a lot there. "That experience actually is where I really formed my coaching philosophy about how you really can develop a program and get beyond the wins and losses initially and really get to building a program and a philosophy so that the wins can come in the future."
The new Heat boss officially starts the job on May 15th. Pottinger looks forward to settling into Kelowna. He has connections to the community and even got married here.
Once he's settled, he expects he'll need to make some additions to a team that managed just seven wins last season, but nothing major.
"I think there's some great pieces currently on the basketball team here. And I really think it will boil down to finding some other great players to augment the skill sets of the guys that are already here."
Pottinger describes his coaching style as "caring and demanding." On the court, he emphasizes the importance of good defence. He came over to KelownaNow after a breakfast event that included speeches about overcoming adversity and it helped charge his batteries for the job ahead.
"There is going to be some adversity. And really the work will be trying to focus on the big picture and being able to fight through some of that adversity and develop some character and the team will improve."