You Can’t Run From the Law

SROs become new track coaches at BV


Aubrey Herrin, Staff Writer

With the track season currently underway, freshmen aren’t the only new faces lacing up their running shoes. Student resource officers (SROs) Trevor Burgess and Nate Schmidt are beginning their first year as track coaches. Schmidt focuses on the distance running events, while Burgess trains the sprinters.

They aren’t new to the sport, however. Both coaches competed in high school and had coached at Blue Valley West prior to this year.

“[We switched to BV because] the district was requiring more coverage as police after school hours,” Schmidt said. ”Rushing out at the end of the day to get to West takes up the majority of the practice time, and we also have to be available to return to school as a police officer if we need to. It just wasn’t feasible.”

When the sprint and distance coach positions opened up at Blue Valley, the SROs applied and were accepted.

“I explained our dilemma, and the school said it was fine,” Schmidt said. “They worked around it and completely understood the circumstances worked out for all of us.”

Coaching at the same school where they work has been an overall positive experience for the officers. Burgess and Schmidt expressed concern that the athletes would be intimidated by having police officers as coaches but knew the students would become comfortable with it eventually.

“We like to joke around,” Burgess said.  “Hopefully [students] know that when they’re in school, we’re resources that they can come to people outside of the uniform.”

In fact, one of the SROs favorite parts of this new position is being able to see and talk with their athletes during the school day since they didn’t have this opportunity when coaching at West.

Another one of the officers’ favorite parts of coaching track is preparing the students for competition.

“I get as excited as them — if not more — for when the meets come up,” Schmidt said. “I absolutely love it.”

Both coaches are looking forward to the rest of the season and hope to return next year.

“Getting ready for track practice is one of my favorite things to do,” Burgess said. “I’m not going anywhere.”