Butler County Times Gazette
  • Douglass' Unrau ready to coach against dad

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  • Douglass boys basketball coach Ty Unrau's biggest focus will be to lead his Bulldogs to a win and advance at the Rupp tournament Friday night.
    But winning also would give him another side benefit: he'd be able to say he beat his dad.
    Ty's dad, Vance Unrau, has coached at Moundridge High School, the team Douglass will face Friday, for 26 years.
    "If we are fortunate to win, it would mean that we get to play for the championship of the Rupp Tournament," Ty said. "Im sure no matter the outcome, we will both be rooting for each other on Saturday and the rest of the year. That said, it would be nice to get the win Friday too!"
    Vance has had all kinds of success with Moundridge, winning multiple state championships and establishing a tough program along the way. Vance even coached Ty when he was in high school.
    Now, Ty is trying to apply the things he learned from his dad to his own team, and that means more than just coaching well on the court.
    "The foundation of my program is built on the principles I learned from my dad. He always tells me to be a teacher first and a coach second," Ty said. "He encourages me to put in just as much effort in the classroom teaching as I do on the floor coaching."
    The father and son talk basketball all the time. During Douglass media day prior to the start of the season, Ty told a story of a film session he and his dad had of a Bulldogs' game. He said his father is his biggest fan, but also his biggest critic. Vance was disappointed that Ty let his defense play zone on a handful of possessions.
    "Times are different," Ty said he told his father.
    While there are some different nuances on the court, Ty wants to instill the same work ethic that Vance instilled in him. They may coach a little differently, but their teams play the same.
    "My dad gets a little more cranky with officials than I do! Other than that our coaching styles are very similar," Ty said. "Play solid defense, prepare our teams for every possible situation, and get them to play hard."
    Both coaches have accomplished that this season. Ty's Bulldogs are 9-2 on the season. Vance's Moundridge squad is 8-2. Should be a good game. And one Unrau will get a little extra bragging rights.

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