Long-time Teays Valley boys golf and basketball coach Brian Barnett is slated to be inducted into the Mid-State League Hall of Fame during the league’s winter sports banquet this weekend.
“Coach Barnett has made a major impact on golf and basketball at not only Teays Valley but the MSL as well,” Teays Valley athletic director Joel Baker said. “When there is a question about courses, or the set-up for MSL golf the answer always is and has been, I’ll ask Brian. He is well known and respected in Central Ohio golf.
“Brian has been part of the basketball program for 33 years and all he has ever asked in return is to be allowed to continue to work with our kids no matter who the head coach was. Now as the head coach, he is teaching the boys to do things the right way. For as much as he’s given his athletes, he is willing to donate all his time to all Teays Valley athletes through his work with the athletic department. No person deserves this honor more than Brian Barnett.”
Coach Barnett has been synonymous with Teays Valley golf for over 40 years. From his playing days for the Vikings from 1982-85 to his introduction as the Vikings head golf coach in the summer of 1998, Coach Barnett has put his fingerprint on a program that under his guidance has achieved numerous plateaus and helped guide a league that has transitioned to keep up with the changing times in golf.
Coach Barnett took over the golf program in 1998 with seven players and a vision of growing a program. In just his second season, Coach Barnett led the Vikings to their first Mid-State League Buckeye Division championship, which was also the first golf championship in program history.
Since becoming head golf coach, Coach Barnett’s teams have won 13 MSL-Buckeye championships in his 24 seasons. Coach Barnett has been blessed with coaching numerous all-league players while sending several of his players onto the collegiate level.
As a PGA Golf Professional, coach Barnett had a vision to grow the game of golf in the high school setting. Under his guidance, Teays Valley golf has seen the development of both a Varsity and JV Boys Golf teams.
Not satisfied with seeing young men playing at the high school level, he had a vision to get young women into the game of golf. Coach Barnett introduced the first girls golf team at Teays Valley in the fall of 2004 and was instrumental in the growth and development of the girls golf program, which has won four league championships to date.
Coach Barnett had the understanding that in order to keep the programs at a high level. Younger golfers needed to be introduced into the game. The creation of the Teays Valley Middle School golf programs came to light.
Along with the development of middle school and high school golfers. Coach Barnett understood that in order for these programs to excel, golfers needed to be introduced to the game at a young age. His vision and creation of the Foxfire Junior Golf Program has allowed hundreds of young golfers the opportunity to learn how to play and love the game of golf.
A testimony to the success of the programs, this past season saw 40 boys and girls in the Teays Valley School District play golf.
Coach Barnett has been an integral part of the growth in Mid-State League golf. A proponent of increasing matches from 18-to-20 per season, along with the transformation of the league switching from nine-hole dual matches to the current four 18-hole tournaments for league play. Coach Barnett has been responsible for contacting courses, the set-up of the course and running of the Mid-State League tournaments for over 10 years, while coaching his teams at a high level.
Coach Barnett is an active member of the Ohio High School Golf Coaches Association, the Central District Golf Coaches Association and currently serves on the State Golf Executive board.
While known for his time on the links, Coach Barnett has also been part of the Teays Valley basketball program for 33 seasons, eventually being elevated to head coach for the 2020 season. Coach Barnett led the Vikings to a share of the MSL-Buckeye championship this season.