Bryant Starkey No Stranger To Bob Jones Basketball Program; Named Head Coach
MADISON- The Bob Jones boys basketball program did not have search far and wide to find a new head coach. Bryant Starkey, assistant coach for the program since 2015, was selected to replace Luther Tiggs who retired at the end of the 2022-2023 school year. Starkey received the news during the May meeting of the Madison City School Board.
“This is where I want to be,” said Starkey, “and they don’t have to worry about getting another coach for a long time.”
Soon after being born in Shreveport, La., Starkey’s family moved to Muscle Shoals where he began playing basketball at age five along with participating in football where he played tight end and was selected to play in the annual All-Star Week Game where he was listed as 6-foot-5, 240-pound while attending Muscle Shoals High. He was selected All Area/Region in both sports with the Trojans. Upon graduating in 20027, Starkey played two years of football while attending Northeast Mississippi Community College before moving to the University of North Alabama where he gave up sports and earned a degree in Secondary Education in 2012. He earned his master’s degree in Instructional Leadership in December, 2017 from West Alabama.
“Basketball has always been my love as my father played at Northeast Mississippi, too,” added Starkey. “I studied the game, especially at Muscle Shoals under legendary head coach Dennis Connor who was a real Xs and Os type of coach. When I made the move to here at Bob Jones I learned from Graham Aderholt and then Luther as my game philosophy comes from those experiences.”
Straight out of college Starkey made his way to Madison where he coached basketball, football and baseball at Discovery Middle School. After one year, he moved back to Muscle Shoals and his alma mater where he became assistant coach in both basketball and football for two seasons. The Trojans played for the State Championship in football while he was the offensive line coach. But Starkey missed the Madison area as that’s where he met his wife, Britany, and he wanted to return to an area he thought would be best for his career and his family.
Starkey and his wife, who works in the front office of Bob Jones, have been married eight years and they have two daughters, Brynton, 7, and five-year old Braelynn. They attend Summit Crossing Community Church.
“There are good people here in this community and the area has everything we want,” said Starkey.
On the basketball court, Starkey is very vocal with his players and has developed great relationships with the players and their families. The current summer months have been busy for Starkey and his Patriots participating in numerous playdates while July will be focused on hitting the weight room as Starkey believes his players need to be stronger physically.
As the squad works its way into the next school year, Starkey is aware the squad will be young with only two seniors on the team roster. He will have five each in the junior and sophomore classes with what he hopes will include two returning starters. “Last season we had three good players and we will have to develop that this year. I hang my hat on defense while on offense I love to push the ball and score on the transition,” said Starkey.
On most any day Starkey can be seen arriving at the school in his 1990 Chevy truck which he got from his grandfather and only has 150-thousand miles. When he’s not on the court, his hobbies are camping, playing golf and disc golf, but his real passion away from the roundball is cooking. His TV seems to be always tuned to the Food Network where he watches his favorite cooking shows.
“I’m also a huge Tennessee Titans fan,” exclaimed Starkey, who also calls “The Office” his favorite TV program.