Jeremy Unger ready for first year

Brent Sumner
Staff Writer

    Coal City tennis fans may have seen a familiar face on the sidelines during the season opener on Tuesday, as Jeremy Unger enters his first year as head coach
    Unger, who has been a lifelong resident of Coal City, took over for Matt Leman this year, He served as the assistant coach last year.
    “I have always been around here,” Unger said. “I grew up in Coal City, went to Coal City schools and teach at Coal City.”
    Unger was a Coaler in his high school years, and even played tennis for the program. He attended St. Francis University where he continued his tennis career at that level.
    In college, Unger pursued a degree in education, and is now a math teach at the high school.
    “I knew in high school that I wanted to be a teacher, I had excellent teachers in  school,” he said. “As far as coaching, no, this is all kind of new to me.”
    Unger admitted he didn’t always want to go in the coaching direction, yet he is enjoying the new experience, and is quickly learning.
    It helps that he spent a year under the direction of Leman, who built quite a reputation with the Coaler program, for both boys and girls tennis.
    “I spent a year under Matt, and he is a great coach and did a good job,” Unger added. “He is still giving me advice and helping me out.”
    So far, Unger has spent some time acclimating to the head coaching position, noting that there are a lot more duties with the job compared to being the assistant.
    However, he is taking a lot from it, and is enjoying his time at the head of the program.
    “Head coach has a lot more involved, a lot more strategy and thinking, and it keeps me busy. Keeps me on my toes,” he said. “In an aspect similar to teaching, you get the joy of helping the young out though. Helping them understand the game, how it works, and you get them to understand competiton.”
    The Coal City community is in full support of Unger as he enters his first season, and wish him the best of luck moving forward.
    After all, Unger devotes himself fully to his profession.
    “Coaching and teaching take up a lot of my time,” he said. “I typically take my job very seriously.”