Tigers News · Carothers ready to get started with Lady Tigers: By Will Willems Sports Editor Lebanon Reporter

By Will Willems will.willems@reporter.net

Pictured: Coach Carothers, wife Joanna and son Carter, not pictured son Thomas

Lebanon — The Lebanon Lady Tigers have a new person in charge of the program.

After Beth DeVinney left this summer to become the Athletic Director at Sheridan, the Tigers announced this week that they are turning to Nic Carothers to lead the Lady Tigers. Carothers met with the team and members of the Lebanon community on Thursday in a meet and greet to introduce him as head coach.

“It was good see so many young faces come out and their eyes were glued to me paying attention,” Carothers said. “This group looks really, really hungry and ready to get at it. I am excited about that, excited to hit the weight room, excited to start conditioning with them and learn who they are as people first. We will develop them as players along the line, but I am really focused on what they need as a young lady to get the best out of them. You have to care about the kid first, and if you don’t then you are in it for the wrong reasons.”

The move is pending school board approval at the August meeting.

Lebanon Athletic Director Phil Levine said that among those who interviewed for the job that Carothers stood out.

“Coach Carothers is very enthusiastic, has a tremendous amount of basketball knowledge and experience, a high level of passion for the game of basketball and helping student athletes achieve success on and off the court,” Levine said. “I am extremely excited and looking forward to having the opportunity to work with Coach Carothers, and I believe he is an excellent addition to our Tiger coaching family.”

Carothers was the coach of the Indianapolis Bandits, a women’s semi-pro team this summer.

He said when he interviewed at Lebanon, he felt like it was a perfect fit for him.

“I had some opportunities at other places, but in the interview, the first thing they brought up to me was the concept of family,” Carothers said. “That is big to me. My family is the big reason that I am who I am today. My wife, Joanna, my boys Thomas and Carter, they are everything to me. So that family atmosphere and implementing that in my program is something I always do. This is a relationship that goes beyond basketball and transcends the floor, that is big for me.”

An Arlington High School and Indiana University graduate, Carothers plans on pursuing a teaching degree and licensure at the University of Indianapolis starting in January.

He has been coaching basketball for more than 10 years, having been an assistant coach at Herron and Shortridge High Schools and the head girls basketball travel coach for Hamilton Southeastern. He has also worked with 100 percent Hoops LLC in Carmel, teaching and mentoring young players to improve their basketball skills on the court and their character off the court.

Carothers has also been a fixture at Butler basketball camps and clinics and providing their college players with individual player development workouts.

He also has previous head coaching experience in high school, having been in charge of the Clinton Central girls program for the past two seasons.

After going 2-21 in his first year, the Bulldogs went 8-14 last year. Carothers said he learned a lot from that experience.

“There were some special girls at Clinton Central, and it was difficult not being with them,” Carothers said. “But I learned that everybody is different. You have to reach each individual at her own pace and level. I think we did that a lot at Clinton Central, and I had to learn that fast there. It showed in their play and their development both on and off the court. We won two games with a predominantly freshmen group my first year, then quadrupled it the next year. That was all the girls putting in the work and working hard. That is what I want to bring here. I want to build those relationships, find what each girl needs and then watch them turn from cubs into big mean tigers.”

When describing his coaching style, Carothers said he wants his love of the game to show and wants the girls to make sure they are having fun when playing.

He added that when they aren’t worried about making mistakes and focused on playing for each other, that is when success happens.

“I am passionate and I want us to play with a lot of fun,” Carothers said. “If you aren’t having fun, then you are worried about making mistakes. And when you are doing that, you are taking the calculated risks you need to be successful. The perception that kids have with what is important, appreciation and acceptance from one another, it can really mess with your dynamic as a ball player when you are out there in front of everybody. It isn’t like football where you have a helmet on and can hide, in basketball when you make a mistake it is out there for everybody to see. Them trusting that the risks they are taking and going all out is for the benefit of the team, and playing for the girl next to them, that is going to be big.”

Carothers will be a full-time instructional aide in the Lebanon Special Education Department. He resides in Indianapolis with his wife Joanna and two sons, Thomas (12) and Carter (3).

He said he is excited to be part of the school corporation.

“This is a great place, this is a great administration, and their are great teachers,” Carothers said. “Multiple teachers have told me how much they love it here and how they love the kids here. I want to be a part of that and in part with what I have been blessed with with those kids. I am excited to get going.”