WHSV Sports Presents: Mike Houston, The Dad Behind The Dukes
Many people know Mike Houston as the motivator, coach and a champion.
But, Houston is much more than just a coach. He's also a husband and a father, who just loves shooting basketball with his two sons Owen, and Reed, and his wife Amanda.
"The constant is the four of us. A lot of times if you stay in one place for a long time, then the constant is everybody. Moving around the way we do -- its just the four of us, so I do think that makes you a little bit more tight-knit than some families," said Houston.
Houston's meteoric rise is rooted in humble beginnings. Transitioning from the high school ranks to small college programs, afraid of what may come next.
"Every move has been scary. We sat there at Lenoir Rhyne the first couple of years, and it was a mess, and I remember us sitting there one night at the house and just saying you know 'we're going to get fired. This is not going to work out real good'," said Houston.
Having his family by his side, has made the success of 2016 that much sweeter.
"Like Reed at the national championship game, him up there on stage in front of the crowd is a memory that I will have forever, and he will have forever," said Houston about his son.
"We're really proud of him. We love to be there, we love to experience it," said Mike Houston's wife, Amanda.
Family has always come first.
"They come around anything that we can have them at -- just because a lot of times that is about the only time you'll see them. We try to steal what time we can, and when its time to be dad, its time to be dad. When its time to be coach, its time to be coach," said Houston.
This year, coach Houston racked up the awards.
From a national championship, to CAA Coach of the Year, to AFCA National Coach of the Year.
While everyone could agree about the awards on the field, getting a dad of the year mug could be a bit more of a task, because there are some tough judges.
Coaching more than 100 young men, traveling, moving, winning, losing, changing jobs, and taking care of a family all at the same time seems like a lot, but for the Houston's it is what they know.
Plus, they have a little help.
"Coffee... coffee, No. I think it is, I guess because we don't get all that much time together when we do we really cherish it," said Amanda.
Amanda admits her husband has an intense personality at home, but it is nothing like what you see on the field.
"Well it is definitely interesting to see the pre-game speeches, because I don't see that very much at home," said Amanda.
The Houston family knows many people see their lifestyle and don't how they do it.
It may be chaotic, but it's theirs.
"Its been an amazing ride. It has been a crazy ride, but an amazing ride," said Amanda.
In the end, Mike Houston's favorite thing about coaching -- turns out -- is being a dad.
"You establish this bond and you go through so many things yearly with each player as they grow up and mature and go through parts of life that you go through as a college student. To me that is the most enjoyable part of the job," said Houston.