It’s moving into year three for Marcus Ebow as the head boys basketball coach at Goose Creek Memorial and it is clear that he is getting more comfortable in the role.
Setting the pace at his program’s camp for fourth through ninth graders this past week, Ebow, microphone in hand, led the way with the help of a number of Patriot assistants and other coaching peers.
It’s Ebow’s program now.
“Approaching my third year I am getting to get a better feel and more accustomed to the grind of being a head coach,” Ebow said. “I think the program is heading in the right direction. I preach to the kids that they are student-athletes and that being a good student is always the top priority. Our program numbers are rising, and our team GPA is commendable.
“We also as a program have been able to be involved in numerous community service activities.”
The Patriots have assisted with Hurricane Harvey relief efforts and partner with Baytown city councilman Charles Johnson to disperse turkeys to those in need during the Thanksgiving holidays.
Ebow next plans to have his players visit the feeder elementary schools and read and play some basketball with the younger students. They also plan to visit some elderly assisted living facilities in the near future.
Then of course, there is the item of playing basketball which now coaches can work with players a couple hours of week.
“This summer we have already begun utilizing the new changes that the UIL has made,” Ebow said. “Our guys have been getting great drill work in with our coaching staff. We also have had our incoming freshmen and junior high kids participate as well. I’ve always wanted the opportunity to work with my kids year-round, so this was a huge blessing and dream come true. I anticipate a lot of growth and improvement for several kids that are taking advantage of this opportunity.”
“Before we were only allowed to work with them on strength and conditioning during the summer so adding the ability to get on the floor instruction is a big bonus.”
It will be after a season that saw the Patriots fall out of the Class 5A playoff race in the last days of the 2018-19 campaign, finishing 5-9 in District 22-5A.
“We are looking to earn another playoff appearance as we did in (2017-18),” Ebow said. “We played hard throughout but just seemed to never be able to get over the hump and play well consistently. We had a stretch where we won nine out of 12 games including winning the championship at the Anahuac Invitational. Once we got into the brunt of district play we struggled to find the offensive consistency needed to be a playoff team.”
The offense continued to struggle as the defense shined, but it wasn’t enough for the Patriots. But now, as Ebow gets to work with his players more and make himself known more in the community, year three could be a promising one for the GCM coach.
“I think with the pieces we have coming in we have a great chance to compete for a playoff berth,” he said. “Our freshmen team won district, so I expect some of those guys to be contributors next season and mesh well with our returners and seniors. I strongly feel that if we commit to playing as a team and not worrying about the individual nuances then we have a chance to do some good things.”