Jackson recalls last TRM Final Four team
Published 8:44 am Wednesday, February 28, 2007
By BY BRUCE HIXON – SPORTS EDITOR
When the T.R. Miller Tigers basketball team tips off against Douglas today at 1:30 p.m. in the Class 4A state semifinals, it will end a 13-year drought away from the Final Four.
While faces have come and gone since T.R. Miller's last state tournament appearance in 1994, the one common link between that team and this year's squad is coach Ron Jackson. Jackson was the Tigers head coach that season. While Jackson has since shifted his head coaching duties over to the Lady Tigers, he still assists current Tigers coach Rob Atkinson.
The 1994 team, which lost 62-57 to Midfield in the semifinals, finished with a 20-8 record, as compared to a 19-6 mark for this year's team. While the records of the two teams are similar, Jackson said the way this year's team plays is much different than his 1994 team.
The 1994 Tigers were a much taller team than this year's edition.
Jackson said the 1994 team relied a lot more on the perimeter game than this year's team does.
Jackson has since taken eight T.R. Miller girls teams to Final Fours since then and won state titles in 1995, 1996 and 2002. Jackson said he does little to change practice preparation during Final Four week.
This year's T.R. Miller team went to the Final Four a day early. Jackson has had teams that went early and others that went the same day.
When his T.R. Miller teams have gone up a day early, Jackson uses one key rule for his players the night before.