Congratulations Coach of the Year – Steve Botkin!


Amanda Mourelatos, Editor of A&E and Community Builder

Last month, Sahuaro Hign School won the Tony Komadina award for excellence and equity in women’s athletics.  And while Sahuaro made a big deal of the award, it overshadowed another amazing achievement for Sahuaro sports – our very own Coach Steve Botkin won the Coach of the Year award! Botkin is the girls basketball coach here at Sahuaro and has been coaching since he was 19 years old (a freshman in college); he has been coaching here for 24 years and 30 years all together. He has helped coach baseball, softball, and football, but basketball is his main focus. When Botkin was a student at Sahuaro, he basketball played for Dick McConnell (who our gymnasium is named after) and said he was a big inspiration when it came to coaching. Another big inspiration was his coach who taught little league baseball. Playing for amazing coaches also impacted his decision on teaching a sport.

Young Botkin didn’t plan on being a coach, but a sports writer. Fun fact: he was a part of the school newspaper when at Sahuaro! He also worked on the Arizona Daily Star newspaper, then decided he wanted to go the teaching route and became a coach. His teaching methods are “old school”, but he does have fairly strong disciplinary skills. When asked why he thought he was named Coach of the Year, always humble, he replied with, “All the amazing talent on the team made it easy to show up and coach everyday.” He also mentioned that everyone has “great chemistry”. He involves his girls in team bonding, such as BBQ’s and San Diego trips, which have nothing to do with basketball and precisely everything to do with bringing everyone together. When asked when the season is over, what he wanted for his players to have achieved, he said he wanted them to leave with the mentality that they played their best and they “did the best they could and not think of things they could have done”.

This coach has a big heart and a strong desire to teach a sport he knows and loves. His passion for his team and the sport is resembled upon the award he won. So girls, if you are interested in trying basketball, Coach Botkin is who you want to coach you!