Titan Times

The student news site of Tuscarora High School

The student news site of Tuscarora High School

Titan Times

The student news site of Tuscarora High School

Titan Times

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Day in the Life of Coach O’Brien

 In our school we have over 200 staff members who have many different jobs. There are math teachers, English teachers, and sports coaches, along with lunch staff and  custodians. Students don’t realize how difficult it is to be a teacher or staff member at a high school – having to deal with moody teenagers for 6 hours, 5 days a week. As I was curious to know what staff members go through, I decided to follow a staff member around for a day to see what their typical day is like. This week I interviewed our returning PE/Health teacher and THS Head Baseball Coach, Micheal O’Brien, to see what his days are like! 



     Coach O’Brien was a staff member of Tuscarora High School in 2022-2023, then went over to Brunswick High School as their Athletic Director; but now, he is now returning back to Tuscarora. Coach O’Brien is excited to return back to Tuscarora, this is my home, my family is here; Tyler and Brady and the PE Dept.” He is one of our main advisors for Tuscarora’s Best Buddies Club and is also a very active athletic coach. He was one of our Girls Flag Football coaches, along with one of Tuscarora’s Unified Bocce coaches, and he is the Head Baseball Coach. 


Coach O’Brien decided to become a PE/Health teacher along with coaching for high school because he established a great relationship with his coaches and gym teachers growing up.  “I loved sports… I wanted a job I would enjoy and make an impact in people’s lives.” 


As his career has evolved around sports, I was curious to see what his profession would be if Coach O’Brien wasn’t a PE/Health teacher and one of our amazing athletic coaches. He responded, “I’d probably be selling umbrellas on a beach during the day and working at a beach establishment at night that plays lots of Jimmy Buffett and Kenny Chesney music!”


     Coach O’Brien’s day has been very busy since baseball season has started, and on top of coaching, he has to plan his classes he teaches. Coach O’Brien gets to school between 4:45am and 5:00am to workout in the weight room, along with getting ready for the day. He then teaches health, Team Sports Basketball, and Team Sports Football;  when it is his planning period Coach O’Brien goes out to the baseball field and sets up for practice later that day. Then, after school, he runs baseball practices or will be with groups in the weight room lifting. Once practice is over, he  goes back to his office and plans things for the next day. “Some other evenings I may have to cover a sporting event being one of the school’s assistant ADs–I could sometimes be at school till 9:30-10:00. But it is all worth it to see student-athletes succeed on the playing fields.”

Coach O’Brien with Lawrence

     Coach O’Brien has time throughout his day to connect with students and form good relationships with them through sports. He said his favorite part about being a PE/health teacher/coach is helping the students through sports, and working with the staff at Tuscarora. Coach O’Brien wishes his students to join a club, participate in school sports or even be in band or orchestra.  


Besides enjoying his job, he believes there is a common misconception with being a PE/Health teacher or a coach. PE/Health teachers have to constantly deal with  various levels of athleticism  among students in gym classes or students he coaches. “The biggest challenge between being a coach and teacher for me is that we have very high expectations for our baseball players and these expectations are probably higher than students who are not baseball players, so we ask a lot of them.” Coach O’Brien is constantly dealing with moody teenagers, and this comes along with always repeating himself to everyone. One thing Coach O’Brien is asked frequently is “What are we doing?” 


Even though some days are rougher than others, Coach O’Brien looks at his day, and even life, through his favorite singer, Jimmy Buffet, who says, “Life is more manageable when thought of as a scavenger hunt as opposed to a surprise party.” 


     As spring sports have just started, this means it is baseball season! Coach O’Brien works with other baseball coaches as head coach to make sure the THS Baseball team is ready and well practiced for the season. Moreover, before the season even began, Coach O’Brien and other assistant coaches ran 40 workouts that baseball players could attend to build up strength for the upcoming season. Additionally, he and a few others have been working down at the field to make sure it is prepared correctly. 


     Coach O’Brien is very grateful to continue being a part of our Titan community, but even more staff and students are glad to have him back with us. Coach O’Brien puts a lot of effort into making sports fun for students and making sure Tuscarora High School is inclusive of everyone no matter what. Even if he doesn’t think we see all the effort and faith he has put into our school and into students, we all see it and thank him. Surely now after reading this, students and staff can get to know him and the work he does. 


Stay tuned for Day in a Life of …


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