Portland Boys’ Varsity Basketball Coach Dave Pettit has resigned, after ten years as Head Coach of the Raiders, effective immediately. Athletic Director Kevin Veale told the Beacon this morning that, “We all appreciate and thank Dave for all of his time and years of dedication and commitment to Portland Basketball”. Veale reported that he hopes to find a replacement before the end of the school year. The position is posted on-line until the end of this week at www.portlandk12.org/Employment.
Pettit spoke to the Beacon late this afternoon and said that he has been thinking about this since the end of the season in March after he and his wife Tammy learned that they are planning to become first-time Grandparents this fall. “We are going to want to get in the car after work on Fridays and go visit our grandchild. That’s not possible if I continue to coach.”
Pettit’s daughter, Lindsey, one of Portland’s best ever high school basketball players (who earned All-State Honors after leading the Lady Raiders to the State Semi-Finals in 2008) who also starred at Ferris State in Basketball and Softball, is expecting her first child in early November. Lindsey is currently a Physician’s Assistant living in Northern Michigan and is also the Assistant Head Coach for the Frankfort Girls Varsity Basketball team.
When asked what his favorite memories of coaching the Raiders were, Pettit enthusiastically responded, “Oh the kids! They have been great kids all the time. I never had an issue with any of them.” Pettit reflected further, “You know being the Head Coach is a lot of work. There are summer programs and clinics, a Junior-Pro program and just about every other Saturday doing stuff for youth.” Pettit also said that he really enjoyed winning District titles in 2016 and 2017 and beating Olivet in a Regional game. He also reflected that in his first year of head coaching for the Raiders his son was a Senior and he knew and had coached a lot of his son’s friends on the team when they were younger.
Prior to serving as the Raider’s Head Coach, Pettit coached Junior Varsity for three years. Prior to that he served as a High School Basketball Official for seven or eight years. “I will miss having contact with all the kids. I really have appreciated all of them over the years”, Pettit reflected. Finally, the Beacon asked Pettit about his unique practice of playing time for his players. “I have always felt that it was important to try to get every kid into every game and not just to mop up. They may only get in for a minute, but it was a quality minute. We might have given up a couple of wins over the years because of it, but I felt everyone deserved a chance to play in the game in a meaningful way. I remember when I was playing in High School and sometimes, I would not get into a game at all. I did not want my players to experience that”.
For Dave Pettit winning has always been more than the final score. As Athletic Director Kevin Veale said earlier, “We all appreciate and thank you for all of your time and years of dedication and commitment to Portland Basketball”. We are going to miss you Coach.