Assistant principal’s return to court takes him back to position he ‘loves’

Sean C. Morgan

Assistant Principal and District 55 Curriculum Director Tim Porter will lead the high school boys basketball team this year.

He succeeds Kostanty Knurowski.

“I love basketball coaching,” Porter said. “I always have. I started coaching many years ago when I was a teacher.”

When Porter got into administration, he got out of coaching, he said; but the bug was still there. He coached his son,Christian Porter’s youth team for a couple of years around the fifth and sixth grade. Christian is now a senior playing on the high school team.

The opportunity came up to coach varsity, Porter said, and he decided to apply for it. He has previously coached high school varsity at Maranatha High School in Pasadena, Calif., and Weston-McEwan in eastern Oregon.

“I loved playing basketball when I was growing up,” Porter said. Baseball has been called “the beautiful game,” but “that’s basketball for me.”

Basketball teaches youths to work as a cohesive unit on offense and defense, Porter said. “There’s something orchestrating that I find fascinating.”

In his position as an administrator, it doesn’t get too emotional, he said. It’s different coaching. He can put a different part of himself into the sport.

Even when he hasn’t coached, he is addicted to it; and his son has been a victim of it.

Watching games on TV, usually college games, Porter stops the games and analyzes what’s going on with his son.

“To be honest, it probably came from my high school coach,” Porter said.

Porter will change things up a bit this year, he said. “I like to play up-tempo with a lot of pressure” under the motto, “play hard, play smart and have fun.

“You can play hard, but you also have to play smart.”

By up-tempo, Porter means that the team should score in transition off a strong defense.

“I believe in defense,” he said. “I’m not going to run an up-tempo game at the cost of defense. I want it to be fast-paced because the defense is.”

Porter is optimistic about the team and thinks it will do pretty well this year.

“I think we have some pretty good players,” Porter said. “We don’t have a lot of varsity playing experience. From what I’ve seen so far, they pick things up quickly. They work extremely hard.”

Four players return with varsity experience, Porter said, while only two have significant varsity time.

Based on the experience level, it could be classed as a rebuilding year, especially with a new coach and a completely new system, he said. “It’s going to take some time. I think by league, we’re going to be very competitive.”

This is Porter’s fourth year in the district. He came to Sweet Home as assistant principal and athletic director. The following year, he served as assistant principal and curriculum director.

Previous to Sweet Home, Porter served as principal at Condon’s kindergarten through eighth-grade school and at the high school.

He graduated from high school in Helix, a town of about 150. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Oregon State University in 1991. He earned his master’s degree from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena in 2004. He will complete his doctorate at George Fox University by the end of the summer.