As the new head coach of boys basketball at Robert F. Kennedy High School, I am excited to bring a new energy and establish traditions that may continue for years to come.

My goal is for my players to grow in all aspects of life and learn what it means to have good sportsmanship on the court. More importantly, I want them to grow in those areas that will lead them to become better people off the court, as many of them will be leaving high school within the next couple of years.

Some of the lessons I hope to impart on my guys include: being on time; working hard; frequent communication with their teachers, parents and myself; and working collaboratively

together as ONE team, not as individuals. I foresee my team giving back to the community and being positive role models on campus among their peers and to the younger kids of our community.

I am beyond thankful and appreciative for the support I’ve received from my administration and members of the school district and the community. I am honored to lead this basketball program and have nothing but pride in my school and student-athletes. I am grateful for the mentors I have in my life who continue to help me to grow as a coach and leader on the basketball court.

Although I hope to earn as many wins as possible this season, I hope to also teach my players that it’s OK to be imperfect because we will fall short at times.

I do not define success by the number of wins we earn, but by the amount of hours my players invest in their community and academic studies in order to graduate high school and move on to college or the workforce.

Along with their parents and teachers, I want to help mold these guys into young men prepared to work hard and show the world what it means to be a Thunderbird.

Luis Padilla is the boys basketball head coach at Robert F. Kennedy High School.

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