New Thompson coach Art Bogan credits faith and family for move to Alabaster
Published 4:51 pm Thursday, October 12, 2023
By ANDREW SIMONSON | Sports Editor
It wasn’t Art Bogan’s plan to come and coach the Thompson girls basketball program.
Bogan was in a comfortable situation as the assistant coach for Texas Southern’s women’s basketball program at a Division I school outside of Houston, a situation he was fine remaining in.
However, during a season of prayer, Thompson reached out about coaching at the school, and he knew that was a call from God.
“I really wasn’t looking to leave Texas Southern when this opportunity presented itself to me, but I was at that place where I was praying and seeking God for direction on where he could use me the most at this phase and time in my life,” Bogan said.
Bogan’s Christian faith is a key part of the person and coach that he is. It is one of the key reasons why he coaches and it is the heartbeat behind his passion for the profession.
“From a faith-based standpoint, me and my career, that’s what everything is going to be about,” Bogan said. “I coach basketball and I do what I do so that I can be an influence for Christ. That’s my priority. And so, basketball, it just happens to be the platform and the gifts that God has given me to be able to do those things.”
That is why he asked his family to pray with him about where God could use him best at this time. He was open about his prayer journey with many friends and family, including his friend Caleb Castille, a former Alabama football player who became an actor and has starred in “Woodlawn” and “NCIS: Los Angeles.”
During that process, Bogan asked God to do what He wanted to do since that was his only priority.
It was about, for me, ‘Where do you want me God?’” Bogan said. “‘Not where I want to be. Not my will be done, but God’s will be done in this situation.’ And so, I sought prayer out about it and God, and this is where it landed me at.”
Bogan also said his family is another reason why he moved to Alabaster. Bogan was born in Birmingham, and most of his family lives in the area.
He and his wife have sons who are ten and eight years old, and after spending time away from Alabama, he wants his kids to be able to grow up around their extended family and get to know them on a deeper level.
“They’ve never really had, in my opinion, that true experience of Alabama,” Bogan said. “We’ve been home to visit, but it’s different when you’re living there. You get a better understanding of it. I want them to have relationships with family members so that they’re familiar with them.
“And so, from a family standpoint, this is a great opportunity for my wife and I to have people with us that we can trust and leave our kids with. That’s a big thing for us being away from Alabama and all of our family members for so long, just having that community that our kids can feel like they’re a part of played a big role in this decision for us as well.”
Bogan has already started working with the Thompson players in offseason workouts and practices. He describes himself as a very fundamentals-based coach, but more importantly, as a player-development coach.
He sees an opportunity to turn Thompson into the top talent developer for girls basketball in Alabama. His goal is to invest in every player, from the star players down to the bench players, not only to develop their on-court skills, but develop them into upstanding people.
The opportunity to pour into kids and mentor them is not lost on Bogan, and it is one that he is honored to have.
“You hear a lot from coaches where there’s always this tone that players alone should be privileged to be a part of the team,” Bogan said. “I do think that there should be some honor in and a privileged feeling of being a part of the team. But it’s also an honor and a privilege to be entrusted with young kids, with molding young people.”