Teacher Q&A – Coach Nick Baumbaugh


Anslee Hester, Chelsea Buzz Reporter

Mr. Baumbaugh is a math teacher here at Chelsea High School as well as the varsity basketball coach. He agreed to answer some questions for the Chelsea Buzz. You can check out his answers below.


Q- Who/what inspired you to be a basketball coach?

A- I am not sure if any one person inspired me.  I began coaching when I was 17 years old.  My mom and I coached 12 year old girls basketball together.  Since then, I knew I wanted to be a coach.

Q- Why did you decide to come coach/teach at CHHS?

A- When I realized I was going to marry my wife, I would have to move to Alabama.  I started looking around at different schools trying to decide what would be a good fit.  In driving through Chelsea, I felt a connection to the city and felt like it was where I wanted to raise a family.  In learning more about my wife’s family, her Grandma grew up in Chelsea.  It just felt right.

Q- What is your favorite quote and why?

A- Treat others the way you want to be treated.  It goes along with being respectful.  If we all would follow this, the world would be a better place.  

Q- Do you have a coaching philosophy?

A- On defense, we want to make the other team work really hard for their shot, as in no easy shots.  We want to be a pest on the ball, but be able to help when necessary.  On offense, we want to control the tempo of the game.  We want to get the best shot that we can at the right time in the possession.   


Q- Why are you interested in coaching? 

A- First and foremost, I love the game of basketball.  Secondly, the opportunity to teach the game to a group of young men is exciting.  Coaching is so much more than just the sport.  We are trying to change these boys into men and give them skills they can take with them as they move on into workers, husbands, and fathers.  Many of my former players, I am still in touch with today.  


Q- How has your experience been since coaching at CHHS?

A- I have enjoyed coaching at Chelsea High School. We have had years that have been very good and years that have not been so good.  I don’t believe I am measured completely by wins and losses.  Many of the successes of the program will be displayed in future years when these boys we are coaching, begin their own lives.  

Q- Have you coached at a school besides CHHS?

A-  Chelsea is the only place I have been a head coach.  I coached 8th grade one year and 9th grade 3 years in Indiana.  When I moved down here, I was the 9th grade coach at Sylacauga High School and the JV coach at Pelham before coming to Chelsea.  I came to Chelsea in 2008 as the JV Coach.  I coached the JV until 2014 when I became the head coach. 

Q- How long have you coached basketball?

A- As I said earlier I have been coaching since I was 17 years old.  As for coaching at the high school level, I am on year 21 overall, starting my 9th year as the head coach.

Q- How do you motivate the players?

A-  We ask our guys to bring their best day in and day out.  It’s not always easy as there are so many outside influences to slow them down.  We talk about team goals and individual goals with the guys.  For our team to be successful, it will take all guys working together as one.  

Q- What is something you could improve in on your coaching abilities?

A- One of the areas I need to improve on is talking to other coaches more about what they do why they do it.  I have made it a point this off season to talk to more coaches to find out these things.  It has helped me better prepare for the upcoming season.

Q- Did you play basketball in highschool/college?

A-I had a unique experience in both high school and college. As a 9th grader I was fortunate to play JV in the first 9 games of the season.  I only played the second quarter each game.  No more, no less.  I knew what my role was and that’s what I did.  Then as a junior I also played JV.  It was very frustrating as I thought I should be playing on the varsity.  As a senior I started every game but 1.  

In college, I played at Anderson University (Division III).  I only played for 1 year.  I practiced everyday and only played 2 minutes and 13 seconds the entire season.  It was the last game of the year.  After the season was over, my college coach told me I could try out next year if I wanted to, but they would cut me. However, they knew I wanted to coach and asked me to stay on as a manager/statistician. I took it because I loved basketball.  I  learned a lot from my college coaches.  Overall it was a great experience.

Q- What subject do you teach?

A- Algebra 1. I am not sure how many math teachers coach basketball, but there are a few of us out there.