Blakeney encourages graduates

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 12, 2009

Troy head football coach Larry Blakeney urged some 350 graduates from 15 states and 17 nations to find mentors who will help them find success.

“As you ascend personally and professionally through your lifetime and careers, you will come in contact along the way with many people who will help you succeed,” Blakeney said. “Treat them well, remember them and thank them every chance you get. Your payback will be to do the same for others.”

Success is something this Gordo native is familiar with, but Blakeney shared his life story with the graduating class.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

He spoke of changing jobs three times in about three months to coaching a small private high school to eventually finding his niche as head coach at Troy University, where he is in his 19th season.

Blakeney encouraged graduated to “follow your gut.”

Blakeney is one of the longest-serving coaches at the same school, which puts him in the ranks of Joe Paterno, Bobby Bowden and Frank Beamer.

Blakeney encouraged graduates to be overall good people.

“Be good men and women, husbands and wives and parents – that’s the hardest job,” Blakeney said. “Raise children, don’t just allow them to just grow up.”