Tigert was introduced as the MCHS Tiger Basketball leader on Friday by School Superintendent John D. Pierce and MCHS Principal Nancy Pruitt. With members of the local media on hand, Coach Tigert spoke for the first time with his players and their parents before taking the team in for a private session together.
Tigert, a history and government teacher, is a graduate of Dickson County High School and the University of Memphis. He coached in Memphis heading up the St. Louis Middle School program, a feeder school for Christian Brothers of Memphis, for four years. Coach Tigert then moved on to coach at Collierville just outside Memphis before taking an assistant coach position at Tupelo High School in Mississippi.
"At Tupelo High School, Coach Tigert was fortunate to work as an assistant to boys' basketball coach David Ball, who has coached in two state championship games and made four final fours in a ten-year head coaching career," said Pierce. "He compiled a 227-82 record over that period of time."
Tupelo High School athletics has been recognized as one of the top athletic programs in the state of Mississippi by winning 14 out of the past 17 MHSAA All-Sports Awards. Tupelo High School was also selected as the top athletic program in the state of Mississippi by Sports Illustrated in 2005.
The experience at Tupelo was tough to leave for Coach Tigert but he decided that he wanted to get back to Middle Tennessee closer to his home town of Dickson. He found the job opening at MCHS on the TSSAA website and put his name on the list of coaching hopefuls.
"I'm really excited to be here," Tigert said. "I've always wanted to be head coach and have my own program in the Middle Tennessee area."
Coach Tigert outlined his style and philosophy for the players and their parents on Friday talking about discipline, hard work and the building of character as staples of his program. He said that he recognizes Marshall County as a good Christian community and that is something that drew him here and to Marshall County High School.
On the court, Tigert said he traditionally likes for his team to get up and down the floor using all 94 feet of the court and play in-your-face defense.
"I like to spread the floor and fire up the three," Tigert said.
Coach Tigert knows the area and the teams that the Tigers will play in the district and region, especially Lewis County and Giles County. He will spend the next few days studying tapes of the Tigers while preparing for basketball camps to get to know his team and players better.
"We want to win ball games, no doubt," Tigert said. "But, more importantly than that, we want to create men of character."
Tigert said he truly believes that taking his philosophy to heart will produce the wins fans are looking for while molding his players into the fine young men.
Tigert and his fiancÚ, Jessica, are looking forward to moving to the area after she finishes up her college graduate work. In the meantime, Coach Tigert will go apartment hunting and focus all his energy on the Tigers for the rest of the summer and beginning of the school year just weeks away in August.
"After talking to Coach Ball and community members from Coach Tigert's home town of Dickson, I believe Marshall County's basketball program is in good hands," Pierce said. "Over the next few weeks our basketball team will be going to camp and Coach Tigert will begin the process of rebuilding the program."