PAT McKee would peck at his computer for hours, hammering out notes to players and parents of the Columbus North girls basketball team. As head coach of the Bull Dogs, it was his job to keep those closest to the program informed.
And McKee didn’t leave a thought unreported.
“A lot of coaches send out weekly notes, but his notes are day-to-day, minute-to-minute accounts,” North athletics director Jeff Hester said. “I’m not going to say he works harder than any of our other coaches, but I can say Pat is the most detailed coach that I’ve ever worked with.”
McKee’s meticulous mind was the brains behind the North basketball operation in 2011-12, whether the former Indianapolis Star sportswriter wants to admit it or not. In his second year at North, McKee, 53, guided the Bull Dogs to 19 straight wins, all the way to the Class 4A state championship game, a half-court heave away from winning the program’s first state championship.
For his efforts, McKee has been named The Republic’s 2011-12 Coach of the Year.
“He’s a great guy,” Hester said. “He loves the kids. Nobody’s perfect, but Pat tries to be perfect.”
Shortly after graduating in 1980 from the University of Missouri, McKee began splitting time working for the Indianapolis Star and serving as an assistant coach on the Butler women’s basketball team. By 1989, he was coaching travel basketball teams, fully immersed in a hobby that didn’t stop until 2004.
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