Ladies and gentlemen, in keeping with the Ankeny Booster Club's tradition of recognizing the outstanding achievements of our student athletes, and the coaches that have led and inspired them to strive for greatness in their chosen sport and the classroom, the booster club committee, in accordance with the Ankeny School District and the community of Ankeny, would like you to join us in celebrating the lifetime achievement of Ankeny Centennial Girls Basketball Coach, Scott DeJong. Coach DeJong will receive this prestigious community honor at the 4th Annual Ankeny Booster Bash, held Saturday, April 29, 2017, on the DMACC campus in Ankeny.
Between his legendary stint as basketball coach at Ankeny High School – and Ankeny Centennial High School since 2013 - Coach DeJong has amassed a staggering resume of achievement that has routinely seen his teams hoisting the weight of heightened expectations, national recognition, or quite often, state championship hardware.
Like most sports, particularly baseball, the game of basketball is a numbers driven sport; statistics tell you all you really need to know. For instance, numbers delineate the fine line between success and failure, so much so that wins and losses are inextricably linked. Numbers also identify determination, resolve, and commitment. Most of all, numbers act as the measuring stick helping to differentiate sustained levels of success and longevity from mere footnotes. But, as it relates to Coach DeJong, numbers tell only part of the story. Consider the following:
• 25 – Years as Head Basketball Coach
• 566-131 – Lifetime Win/Loss record
• 18 - State Championship appearances
• 7 – Iowa Girls Basketball Coach of the Year Award (’97 ’99, ’02, ’03, ’04, ’05, ’16)
• 7 – Iowa State Girls Basketball Championships (’97, ’99, ’02, ’03, ’04, ’05, ’16)
• 4 – Consecutive Iowa State Girls H.S. Basketball Championships (’02 –’05)
• 3 – National High School Girls Basketball Coach of the Year Award Nominations
• 1 – The NHSACA National High School Girls Basketball Coach of the Year Recipient (2014)
Certainly, the numbers don’t lie. Too much emphasis is placed on inflated analytics, you argue? Well, consider the following awards and recognition bestowed upon Coach DeJong over the years, acclaim originating from both media and his fellow coaches:
• 2013 WBCA Regional Coach of the Year
• 2013 Nike All-American game Head Coach
• 2011, 2008, 2005 National High School Athletic Coaches Association National Coach of the Year Finalist
• 2010 Making a Difference Award Winner awarded by the National Association of Basketball Coaches
• 2007 National High School Athletic Coaches Association Hall of Fame
• 2007 National High School Athletic Coaches Association Distinguished Service Award
• 2005 WBCA Nike High School All-American game Head Coach
• 2005 National High School Coaches Association Regional Coach of the Year
• 2005 Iowa Girls Coaches Association Hall of Fame inductee
• 2004 Character Counts Coach of the Year inaugural recipient
• 2003 WBCA National Coach of the Year nominee
• 2002 Golden Plaque of Distinction recipient, Iowa Girls High School Athletic Association
• 2002 Des Moines Register Coach of the Year winner (all sports, boys/girls)
Last but not least, in 1999 and again in 2005, Coach DeJong led his Ankeny girls basketball teams to Top 20 national recognition, ranking #20 and #2 respectively in the USA Today final rankings poll.
What’s impossible to measure by numbers, or plaques, or certificates of merit, however, is the far-reaching impact on the hundreds of athletes Coach DeJong has coached and mentored in his now 25-year Ankeny coaching career. And he’s shows no signs of slowing down. No, even after accumulating more state championships in the state of Iowa than any coach in history, Coach DeJong understands time remains on the clock and there’s still work to do. So, day after day and year after year, he laces ‘em up and hits the ground running, demonstrating his unique passion for teaching, be it on the hardwood or in the classroom - proudly representing the community of Ankeny in the process.
For nearly three decades now, Coach DeJong has instilled his one-of-a-kind influence and leadership on players of every size, every race, and every color, turning girls into confident young women, and individuals into a team. And each player, in their own way, has taken a piece of him with them as they graduate to pursue their goal. But through it all - school district divisions and personal health battles, Coach DeJong continues to do what he’s always done, every day, every year: prepare; develop; mentor; console; coach; compete. And win. Always win.
Please join Ankeny Booster Club in honoring Coach Scott Dejong with this deserving lifetime achievement.