Klein’s Arnold seals 49th season, captures win No. 700 along the way
For Glenn Arnold, it’s not about him — it’s the people around him.
While Arnold ponders his status for the 2019-20 school year, he can’t help but reflect on an already fulfilling career as basketball coach.
Despite exiting the playoffs in the opening round this past season, the Bearkats helped Arnold reach a special milestone.
The 25-year Klein head coach attained career win No. 700 against Klein Cain in the regular season finale, making it one of his most memorable accomplishments in his 49 years of coaching.
Whether or not he keeps adding to that winning total is yet to be determined.
“As far as retiring…I am still not sure what I am going to do,” Arnold said. “I’m still debating; I’ve got a big decision to make. I have not finalized my thoughts yet, I love Klein High School and the students, parents, teachers and coaches here.”
Arnold, who really doesn’t want to retire just yet, would love to make it 50 years of coaching.
“That’s what’s keeping the door open,” Arnold said. “I love coaching, still enjoy coaching; I’ve been doing it for a long time. I’ve got great kids, it’s a good school district, good school and I’ve had good support from the administration. I still love working with young people, especially the ones I have at Klein.”
Klein (20-12, 11-5) finished third in District 15-6A and made the playoffs along with first-place Klein Forest and The Woodlands.
The Bearkats were unable to get Arnold win No. 701 in the postseason, losing to Spring in the bi-district round 60-47, Feb. 19.
Still, no one can win 700 games by themselves, Arnold knows that better than anyone.
“Like I tell my guys, I never got a rebound, I never shot a free throw, I never got a steal, ya’ll got all those,” Arnold said. “So it’s a credit to the teams that I’ve had. The players are what makes it happen.”
After Arnold mentioned to an assistant coach the fact that a possible win against Klein Cain on Feb. 12, would clinch win No. 700, the assistant went out and told everybody.
“That was a surprise to me that it was that big of a deal,” Arnold said.
However, Arnold recognizes that it truly is a big deal.
“I’m very proud to have been in that category of 700,” Arnold said. “But the reason you get to that level is because you’ve got good kids, good solid basketball players that are coachable, good support from the administration and everything is very supported.
“Without that you’re going to have trouble. I’ve been very fortunate wherever I’ve been, I’ve been very blessed.”
This year coming in, the Bearkats only had one player in then junior Aaron Davis that came off the team from last year.
“(Davis) was a holdover, then I had some really good freshman teams last year and those kids were sophomores, and they grew up real quick,” Arnold said. “Then I had some junior varsity kids and a kid move in from Cy Creek that was pretty good.”
It was a whole new re-building group for Arnold.
“I’ve never thought at the time early in the season that we’d win 20 games,” Arnold said. “Because they were really young and inexperienced, but the more we played, the better they got.”
The main player was senior forward Davis, who was also named all-region and all-district this season.
“He was a pretty good player,” Arnold said. “I don’t know what level he’ll play in yet, but he’s a college player.”
David wasn’t only a solid player, but one of the leaders of the group. There were a few other seniors like Jack Smith who helped out as well in different ways.
Arnold similarity had some sophomores that stepped up and a junior in Tyson Thompson that was huge as well. Point guard Thompson is a four-sport athlete in football, track, baseball and basketball.
“He (Thompson) played football, was the MVP as a junior,” Arnold said. “He stepped up, kind of fit in after a while and played well.”
There’s also sophomore center Mason Tharp, point guard Aaron Hutchinson, guard/forward Aaron Gonzalez and forward Thirhrey Smiley.
Arnold admits it’s a young group, nevertheless, they have nine sophomores on junior varsity, so the next couple of years look optimistic for Klein.
“You never know from year to year what’s going to happen,” Arnold said.
Arnold’s debut season at Klein started a run where they made the playoffs eight straight years.
“I had some really good players when I first got here,” Arnold said.
In total, his teams have been in the playoffs at Klein in 16 out of 25 years. They’ve been to the regionals a couple of times and have claimed a few district titles along the way.
Besides high school, 12 out of Arnold’s 49 years were in college. He was the assistant coach at East Texas Baptist and then spent 10 years at North Texas.
With the half coaching century mark right around the corner, Arnold would love to reach another milestone surrounded by his peers.
In the end, 700 wins is great but the greatest thrill to Arnold is seeing his guys get out of high school, go to college and make something of themselves.
“I’ve got young men now that’ve been superintendents at school, I’ve got them as lawyers, doctors and in every profession that I’ve been associated with,” Arnold said. “That’s the most important thing, not 700 wins. The ones that help with the 700 wins that are making a good life for themselves and are a credit to our society, that’s the bottom line right there.”