Rod Reed: The living example of being more than a coach

By MIKE PATTON | Nashville Voice

A coach of a team is primarily judged by how he does. The injuries and things like that tend to come secondary to the wins and losses he or she produces.

Such is life when it comes to the world of college and pro sports. People may get caught up in records, but the job of a coach is much more than the wins and losses he or she produces.

Such is the case for Tennessee State Rod Reed this year. The veteran coach started the season on a high, winning the first two games. After that good start, the Tigers would go on to lose three straight games.

On this past Saturday, which was TSU’s Homecoming, the Tigers won in a blowout 41-14. Coach Reed was happy to be on the right side of the win/loss ledger again, but there was much more behind the win than anyone cares to speak on.

When asked about if this game provided more of a fresh start for his team, Reed went into detail about the things his team has been facing,

“After the Vanderbilt game, we emotionally had a lot of things going on. We had a one player that has to bury his dad this week. We have another that has to bury his mom this week. There is a lot of things that have been going on that have been emotionally pulling on this team.”

Reed also went on to say, “Kids are real resilient but when you get hit with that along with all the injuries we have had. We had 12 or 13 guys out for this game alone.”

Reed brought us into the world of TSU football a little bit more and you could see that he has been dealing with a lot of things. He has not only been the coach of the team, but he has been the psychiatrist and the motivator as well.

He also talked about the defense and how he put the ownership of preparation for the Tennessee Tech game on his coaching staff to deal with the injuries.

He said they made things as simple as possible to allow his players to just play the game. That may not seem like much to people, but that is the sign of a coach that knows the pulse of his team.

So many will look at the 2-3 record the Tigers have. They are currently 1-2 in the conference with a trip to Southeast Missouri State coming up next after their bye week.

Plenty are not giving them a chance after the results they have had the last few weeks, but with what Rod Reed has helped this team overcome with the injuries and deaths of parents, I would not count them out just yet.

Reed is an example of what a coach is and should be. He knows he has a job to do, but he also knows that his job is to be there for his players, which he continues to do each and every day with his team.

Whether you like Reed as a coach or if you do or don’t know him, you have to respect him for guiding this team through the injuries and the tough times he continues to lead them through.

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