The Lobby Observer

Mr. Belbin Returns to WHS Athletics


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By: Haley Welsh ’19

With the growth of the athletic programs at Westborough High School, it was decided that the current athletic director, Ms. DiCarlo, could benefit from having an assistant athletic director to help with day to day responsibilities as well as season long goals.

Social Studies Department Head and teacher Mr. Belbin accepted the role for the fall season.  He certainly has athletic experience as he used to coach: hockey, baseball, and softball at WHS.

Mr. Belbin coached hockey at WHS for fourteen years but had to stop due to his own commitments with his sons. He wanted to be a part of their athletic careers and could not commit to both coaching and watching their games.

However, he missed the bonds he formed with the athletes he also saw in the classroom, and saw this position as a great way to regain those relationships. His sons have their own sports in the winter and spring, so the fall was an ideal time for him to work with WHS athletics once again.

He also missed the value he gained from working in an athletic setting as well as classroom setting.

Mr. Belbin explains, “They complement each other. I always felt I was a better teacher because of my coaching and a better coach because of my teaching.”

He feels like his experience as a coach has prepared him for assisting coaches this year. He understands coaches’ needs and is able to help them in ways he knows are most beneficial.

He wants to be able to let coaches “focus on what coaches do best and that’s teach their teams.”

As assistant athletic director, Mr. Belbin assists Ms. DiCarlo at various sporting events and in the office. For example, if there were multiple games in one day, but at different venues, Mr. Belbin and Ms. DiCarlo would work together to make sure each event was covered and that the coaches, players, referees, and fields were prepared for competition. He also helps coaches in any way needed and with administrative duties and equipment management.

Ms. DiCarlo appreciates his assistance: “[Mr. Belbin] is able to come in and be another adult supervisor around and he’s able to really support the coaches in any way that they need…I do think that it helps him build some relationships with kids that he now sees in his classes so we’re just really lucky to have another adult around to help support the kids and the coaches in any way that they need.”

Looking at the fall season as a whole, Mr. Belbin remarks “The first goal for us was to make sure that I could give Ms. DiCarlo as much support as needed” whether it be attending a game or assisting the athletic trainer. Secondly, he wants to meet as many athletes as he can, on any team, and build those relationships that he missed after stepping down from coaching.

He also explains how he has always been interested in Westborough’s athletic history and has ideas to learn more about that with some long term projects.

“I’m so interested in the athletic history here because it just goes well with what I do…we have a whole bunch of things that are historical to Westborough athletics so we’ve got some long term goals to bring those things out to make sure those things are on full display.”

Before this project can be focused on, however, the current field renovations must be completed. Even though the project is very time consuming and has affected many fall sports, Mr. Belbin has enjoyed being part of it. He is appreciative of the opportunities he has had to sit in on construction meetings and has a new appreciation for all the time, effort, and dedication Ms. DiCarlo, Superintendent Bock, and construction crews have committed to the project.

With a laugh, Mr. Belbin says “The position started at precisely the right time given the circumstances” due the many unexpected challenges that came up as the project moved along.

Ms. DiCarlo agreed, commenting that “The fall has not been as smooth as we had hoped and so it’s just great to have somebody that knows what’s going on and that can help point people in the right direction…to have another person with me in the department that can talk educated about the facility and what’s been taking place is great.”

Overall, Mr. Belbin wants to use his coaching and teaching experience to assist coaches in any way possible, whether it be assisting with game play or giving advice if a team isn’t performing to their best ability. He explains how even though he isn’t necessarily familiar with each fall sport, he knows enough about athletics to be able to help any coach.

He enjoys “being able to get to know some coaches that [he] didn’t know in the past…and getting to connect with kids” who he may not have in class, but can now see in the hallway and have a conversation.

Mr. Belbin has become a familiar face in WHS athletics once again and has already contributed much of his time and expertise to helping student-athletes, coaches, and Ms. DiCarlo. His efforts and commitment have definitely helped the growing athletic programs and his help is appreciated by many.

 

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