By Scott Wallace, Sports Information Director Fisk
Christopher Franklin is a successful businessman. During Black History Month, the Fisk University alum dedicates each day saluting black men that inspired him. On Monday, Franklin gave flowers to his former basketball coach at Fisk Dr. Larry Glover. Glover is the current athletic director at the school. Below is an excerpt that he put on Facebook describing what Glover means to him:
Chris Franklin and wife Teresa Franklin (Photo courtesy Facebook)
“1999-2000 Fisk University Bulldogs Basketball Team was the resurgence of a competitive basketball program at the University. Dr. Larry Glover (no Facebook) was the Head Men’s Basketball Coach and Athletic Director at the time. On the picture below you’ll see our record and notice we didn’t win every game, but we had a winning season and it felt different. Fisk no longer was expected to lose. We were expected to compete and win.
Coach Glover recruited all over the country and assembled some of the best collective basketball players Fisk had seen in nearly 20 years. There have been great players individually in the past, but the team as a whole, had some of the best athletes the school had seen in quite a while. A couple of years after the team pictured below, Fisk upset Tennessee State University at Gentry Center in one of the most epic underdog stories in Nashville in quite a while. He brought in guys and taught them how to be Men. Taught them the importance of teamwork and brotherhood.
One of the lessons I learned from Coach was that practice doesn’t make perfect, practice makes improvement. I remember a drill where we’d get in 3 lines and do a circular layup sequence where the ball couldn’t touch the floor. The team collectively had to make 25 left hand layups, then 25 right hand layups in a row before starting practice. The first time we did this as I team, I remember thinking, this was impossible. By the end of my freshman year, it was routine. He set the bar high for the team and expected growth for us as Black men individually and changed the culture of Fisk University Basketball.
We were almost never the biggest team on the floor or the most athletic, but we were in the best shape, played relentless defense and learned to look out for each other on and off the court.
I’ve been in leadership since I was 23 as a manager, business owner, entrepreneur, and director. All of those positions required creating a winning culture and building a team. These were lessons learned with Dr. Larry Glover at Fisk. I can’t say I knew it then, but it’s clear to me now.
Dr. Glover was my Head Coach and Athletic Director officially, but he was a strategic thinker, leader, Black male role model, father-figure, and friend.”
If you are reading this post, I challenge YOU to copy this text and make a post to lift up a #BlackMan during Black History Month and challenge more to do the same. “Give Them Their Flowers” before they are with the Ancestors.