County legacies come together

Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Marshall County baseball coach Mike Reese talks some strategy with the Tigers in between innings at Joe George Field in Lewisburg Thursday night. Photos by Anthony S. Puca

Hensons join Reese on Marshall County baseball coaching staff

Longtime Marshall County High School baseball coach Mike "Monk" Reese and a pair of Chapel Hill sporting greats, Jimmy and Colin Henson have teamed up this season in a historic partnership, adding to the Tigers' storied history of coaching .

"I was looking for a coach and when I found out Jimmy was available it was an easy decision," said Reese, who has been with Marshall County baseball for 33 years. "I have known Jimmy for a long time, he is a little younger than me, so I have been able to watch him over the years and he is a great coach, a Godly man and it has been great having him here."

Era begins

It all began appropriately at Joe George Field in Lewisburg Thursday night when the trio took to the diamond versus Murfreesboro Central Magnet School in only the second game of the season for Tigers.

"I'm glad to be here, we got some talented kids that are still learning how to play the game," said Jimmy Henson. "Coach Reese has scheduled all non-conference games versus 3A opponents, so that's good when you are never playing down."

Although the Tigers lost 10-4, it was exciting to witness the beginning of another era at MCHS, filled with decades of coaching experience, plus the addition of a third generation coach added to the mix.

Jimmy Henson joined up with Mike "Monk" Reese this year as coach of the Marshall County Tigers.

New challenge

"It's exciting and challenging, it's a big difference coming south of the river, but the kids are working hard and it's always fun to work with young people," said Jimmy Henson.

Mike Reese took over the managerial position this season from his brother Steve Reese, who retired after 38 years with the Tigers.

Tennessee Baseball Coaches Association Hall of famer Joe George, who holds the state record for wins at one school with 798 retired five years ago.

George won three state titles with the Tigers, the first one coming in 1983 when MCHS went 31-0.

Ten years later, the Tigers claimed their second title and won again in 1994 to complete the back-to-back feat.

Old and young

Now add to that the Henson legacy, beginning with Chapel Hill icon Norman Henson, a graduate of MCHS and longtime coach and administrator at Forrest.

Jimmy and his son Colin were both multi-sport stars with the Rockets and Jimmy brings years of coaching experience to the table in Lewisburg.

"And to get Colin too was a big plus for us," said Reese. "He is really a hard working kid and is a great addition to our staff and he is doing a great job with the kids."

Colin, fresh out of college, broke in to the coaching ranks this season under Tiger football coach Thomas Osteen.

Colin Henson, left, works the pre-game outfield drill for the Tigers as MCHS catcher Chandler Harmon catches in for Henson.

Learning experience

"It's very exciting, especially my first year out of college, so when I got the opportunity I jumped on it and hit the ground running," said Colin Henson. "I couldn't be in a better situation, learning the game with the two guys I'm working with who have so much experience and knowledge of the game."

Later this year, the Henson legacy will added to when the new school in Chapel Hill will be christened as Delk/Henson Middle School in honor of Norman Henson and Dean Delk.

"I can't wait to see the sign go up and see my granddads face," said Colin Henson. "And to share it with Mr. Delk, it doesn't get any better than that in Chapel Hill."