NEWBERRY, SC (WIS) - Newberry College men's head basketball Dave Davis loves basketball.
When Davis first started the path into coaching, his wife reminded him that it was costing money for him to coach. He never worried about the dollar signs. Davis simply stayed true to his heart.
"I said, 'Well, some people play golf. Some people go fishing,'" Davis said. "I said, 'I want to coach basketball.'"
Davis ventured into the world of coaching at 21.
"Looked about 12. I was coaching JV basketball," Davis said. "When I walked in they thought I was one of the players."
And he thought he knew how to lead. That feeling faded quickly.
"I thought going into coaching it was all about strategy," Davis said. "It's about people. Coaching people. Forming relationships."
In 26 years as a head coach, seven seasons spent at Newberry, he's dedicated his career to cultivating strong relationships with players and his assistant coaches.
"Want to help them throughout their lives," Davis said. "I lived a little longer than they have, so sometimes I think my advice can help them."
His coaching tree indicates he has. More than 25 former assistants and players currently coach high school all the way to the NBA ranks.
"It's been awesome to be able to help people reach their dreams," Davis said. "Almost everyone in the coaching tree worked for free, or for so little money when they worked for me. All these guys have helped me tremendously."
The vast coaching tree, Davis said, inspires future voices in the game to want to join the Wolves.
"No doubt it helps," Davis said. "It helps in recruiting. A lot of kids coming that play for us want to coach. Certainly, we have connections."
But for Davis, the connections with people beyond basketball matter most.
"You leave here we hope everything we teach in basketball has a life implication," Davis said. "I believe that it does."