Brookfield's newest coaching hire is confident that he can breathe life into two programs to whom success is unfamiliar.
Carey Davison, a native of Salem, Mo., accepted his first head boys' basketball coaching position two weeks ago. He will also coach baseball in the Bulldogs' inaugural 2020 season.
Davison graduated from Missouri State in 2016 with a bachelor's degree in history education, and he is already teaching in-school suspension at Brookfield. He played four years of hoops at Salem, and did not play high school baseball because of the seasonal conflict presented by his affinity for golf.
He said that while his first real part-time coaching experiences came in college, basketball runs deep in his family.
"Basketball has always been a passion of mine," Davison said. "My dad was a basketball coach, and from a young age, I got to sit on the bench with him and get more of an in-depth look at the game than other kids might have. Growing up and playing, I got to study the game and my first love was kind of breaking down the game, whether it's live or on film. The first thing I love about basketball is trying to outmaneuver the other coach on things. To me, the strategy side of basketball is what's always drawn me."
Davison said that his interview and signing with Brookfield was actually spurred by an interview in Trenton. The Trenton administration had already found its man by the time Davison interviewed, but Trenton athletic director Wes Croy advised Davison that there was an opening in Brookfield. He agreed to send his information the Bulldogs' way.
The new skipper and his wife, Julie, are expecting their first child in October. For the two small-town kids, Brookfield was an idyllic fit, both to raise a family and foster a basketball culture in a football-and-wrestling-first town. Davison gushed about Brookfield, from the infrastructure to park revitalization right down to the people themselves.
"The thing for my wife and me was that we kind of fell in love with the town itself," Davison said. "Both of us grew up in small towns, and Brookfield reminded us of where we came from. When we pulled into town for the first time, we looked at each other and we just kind of knew that this is where we saw our child going to kindergarten.
"On the basketball side of things, to me, it felt like the perfect fit to start building my own program and create a culture. The first thing we need to do is get the kids to buy into what we're trying to do, and that will trickle out into the community and build some excitement."
Davison's plan for the summer months is June-heavy. He will be hosting a camp for high schoolers, middle schoolers, and third through fifth graders from June 10 to 13. Davison is trying to find a shootout to conclude that camp. On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays after weightlifting, Davison will host an open gym, and his July slate will be much lighter once the football preseason ramps up.
The Bulldogs are coming off of a two-year stretch in which the boys' basketball team won just six games, and last season, off-the-court distractions were more prominent than the product on the floor.
To put it mildly, Davison is up for the adversity.
"My passion for the sport carries over into everything I do," he said. "I don't claim to be an expert at anything, but I strive every day to learn as much as I can about whatever task is in front of me. I'm not denying that there are challenges and obstacles -- walking in the door and taking over an established program and starting a new one is a tall order, but I embrace it."
Updates about the boys' basketball team can be located through Twitter handle @BHSBBBall.