SIDELINE OBSERVATIONS: Celebrating generations of sports

Published: Wednesday, September 25, 2013 at 05:48 PM.

Bulldog football and baseball player Matt Gillis is following in the footsteps of his dad, Tim Gillis, the Crestview baseball coach and an assistant football coach. I've been told that Tim was a late bloomer athletically, but his hard work and dedication, along with a growth spurt in college, allowed him to play several years of minor league baseball.

Coaching spouses Kathy and Steve Combest played their high school sports in Mississippi, but their son, Chase and daughter, Chelsea, were multi-sport stars at Baker.

Baker assistant football coach Brian Wagner was a standout receiver in his day for the Gators going on to play college ball at Mississippi College. Brian's son, Logan, started as a receiver, but played quarterback his junior and senior years.

Logan had opportunities to play college football, but he wasn't willing to sacrifice academics for athletics. Logan's sister, Haley, was another in the line of children following the athletic success of their parents. Haley was a star volleyball and basketball player at Baker, and like her brother, she opted for the academic side of college life.

If I'm still on the job in four or five years I might start covering the grandchildren of old teammates and the children of athletes I covered when I first arrived in Okaloosa County in December of 2000.

Time stops for no man. And the passing seasons are full of surprises and reminders that the greatest legacy an athlete leaves is not in the record book, but in the happy and active children they raise.

Randy Dickson is the Crestview News Bulletin’s sports editor. Email him at, tweet him @BigRandle, or call 682-6524.

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