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County association honors season's best

Jesuit is honored as the county's best team and King senior Marquise McCullough is the player of the year.

By EMILY NIPPS, Times Staff Writer

© St. Petersburg Times, published April 10, 2003

TAMPA -- Courage, leadership and celebrating life's distractions in a time of war were some of the themes of Wednesday night's Tampa Bay Basketball Coaches Association awards banquet.

Jesuit, which went 25-6 and was a region finalist, won the Team of the Year Award, which is voted on by Hillsborough County coaches. The Paul Straub Player of the Year Award, presented by former University of Tampa and Jesuit coach Paul Straub, went to King senior Marquise McCullough.

Blake senior Isaac Lang, whose mother and father died in the past two years, was given the Heart of a Champion Award, presented by his coach, Winston Davis.

King coach John Mackey won the Doug Walker Coach of the Year Award, and the Meritorious Service Award was given to former Hillsborough coach Leroy Long.

Longtime high school official Clem Brooks was awarded the first T.B.B.C.A Official of the Year Award, and Armwood coach Joe Morris was given the William Bethel Award.

Leto coach Derek Stewart, Jesuit coach Neal Goldman and Brandon coach Mark Hermann were given the Bill Poe "Foundation for Success" Award, awarded to coaches who have given the most to the community.

Guest speaker Steve Ridder, the basketball coach and athletic director at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, spoke on how he took a second-year, winless program and helped it win the NAIA National Championship in 2000. He also spoke about leadership and becoming a role model.

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