Sports

Cougar coach corresponds through MySpace page

Lakewood football coach Dan Teeter uses his MySpace page to motivate and communicate with his players. -
Lakewood football coach Dan Teeter uses his MySpace page to motivate and communicate with his players.
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Like a lot of members of the Lakewood football team, Dan Teeter has a page on MySpace.com.
His page has football photos, Cougar wallpaper, inspiring phrases, a short biography and a list of his favorite bands the majority of which are Christian rock. Perhaps most prominent on his page is a freeze-framed football video headlined, Check out this MONSTER HIT!
But as the Cougars head coach, Teeters 34-year-old face is a surprising one to find among the sea of teenagers typically associated with the networking Web site.
Like many of his 16- and 17-year-old charges, Teeter logs in on a regular basis, corresponding with his team about practice schedules and camps. In his comment section, its not uncommon to find multiple postings from a player asking about the competition for a starting job or clearing his absence with the coach.
Teeter said the idea was borne of necessity. As a history teacher at Sedro-Woolley High School, a half-hour drive from Lakewood, Teeter had to think outside the box to keep in touch with his athletes during football season.
Basically, I put the site together to get to know my kids and communicate with them, he said, adding that the information he posts about his family and religious beliefs is a way to help earn his teams trust.
The personal stuff is a way for them to get to know me. I want to have a good relationship with the players, he said. Im their coach first. But they also need to have some adult figures they can talk to as well.
Teeter also used the Web site as a motivational tool, ranking athletes on his front page by their attendance at training opportunities like summer weight room hours.
Among Teeters top three are two of the Cougar captains this season, junior Joey Davenport and senior John Rundle. With practice underway as of Aug. 20, Teeter plans to announce a third captain early in his teams game schedule.

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