We've talked a lot over the years about the incredible gymnasts at Texas East Gymnastics in Tyler. Well now, one of their coaches is reaping great rewards for all of their hard work. Chuck Dickerson, who has coached at Texas East for the past four years, but whose roots go back 20 years with the program, has been hired to coach at the University of Kentucky. The move also affords Dickerson the possibility of coaching one of the most highly recruited high school gymnasts in the country; Texas East's very own, Storey Morris. Kentucky is one of her top choices for college.
"It's a big step forward, something I'm looking forward to," Dickerson said. "Then on the other end of that, I'm going to miss everybody here deeply, but I do look at it as being a positive for this program."
"It's really sad to see him go and I'll be here alone for a year," Morris said, "but I'm happy for him because I know it's a great job, kind of like almost a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity."
Alone for a year? Despite heavy interest from Ohio State, University of Denver, now Florida, and nearly every other gymanastics school in the country, she seems now to be leaning more towards Kentucky.
"One fo the things I look at with the colleges, one of the top things, is the coaches," Morris said, "because I'll be there for four years with them, so it might be a good thing to like them. I already know Chuck and I know how he coaches, and so that's encouraging."
Almost time to break out the Wildcat Blue leotards?
"Maybe so," Morris said with a sly smile.