Coach Billett Inducted into Hall of Fame

Coach Billett Inducted into Hall of Fame

“A good coach will make his players see what they can be rather than what they are.”  This quote by Ara Parasheghian is the method that Coach Billett has lived by throughout his entire coaching career.  Leading the Latrobe Wildcats to 12 section championships and five undefeated seasons in a row, not to mention this year winning the County Championship for the second year in a row, Billett has certainly earned his induction into the Pennsylvania Wrestling Hall of Fame for the class of 2012. 

To be inducted into the hall of fame a choice must either have excelled in wrestling, coaching or other contributions to the sport such as sports reporting.

 Billett began his coaching career while still in college at Lock Haven University.  He started the YMCA wrestling program at the school and also taught two classes on wrestling. After receiving his degree in physical education and coaching, Billett came to Greater Latrobe High School where he has been coaching for 40 years overall, with 21 years as head coach.  “It has been an awesome experience to coach such hardworking, dedicated kids for forty years.  To have that kind of dedication year in and year out and have it be consistent has been amazing,” said Billett. 

Having coached multiple kids who went on to wrestle in the collegiate level, Coach Billett couldn’t be prouder of his players.  “It’s just special to see my kids move on and succeed in their sport and to be able to see what kind of kids they are. They are top notch kids and you get to see not only what kind of wrestler they are but who they are as a person.”   A few of these collegiate athletes are Chase Small who is wrestling at The University of Pittsburgh, Ryan Walters at Waynesburg University, Joey Walters at Westpoint Military Academy, and Ryan Goodman and Nathan Pennessi at West Virginia University.

“I try to be the biggest sponge I can be with anything coach says; He has really touched a lot of students’ and athletes’ lives.  I see a lot of his old players coming back to thank him for everything he has done,” said Assistant Coach Harbert.  Harbert had Billett as a coach when he wrestled and is now back as an assistant coach to him. “Coach Billett is very dedicated to his team and will frequently stay in the gym till nine at night watching video of the players,” said Harbert. 

A coach like Mr. Billett comes one in a million.  He cares so much about his players’ successes and dedicates countless hours to helping his players get where they want to go.  “My favorite thing in coaching is probably teaching technique and getting a kid to the point that he beats someone that he lost to before and being able to see that kind of improvement,” said Billett.