Jeff Grinstead Interview

Grad Student Gains Seniority as Assistant Coach

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Life as a physical activity graduate student requires a lot of planning.

Preparing lesson plans, planning out how to balance class and teaching, preparing game plans..

Wait, game plans?

Oh yeah, this graduate student also coaches girls’ high school basketball.

Laden Delawder landed his first coaching job with the Alexander Lady Spartans when he was just 20 years old.

“I always wanted to get into coaching, but I really never thought that young, until the opportunity came up,” Delawder said. “Then it did and I jumped at it and we’ve been here ever since.”

Although only a few years older than the 18-year-olds he was coaching, Delawder was able to make a smooth adjustment.

“It’s a different dynamic at first, but once you gain that respect off the top and they understand that you’re their coach, they’re the player, the relationship is fine,” Delawder said.

Now in his third year, Delawder has seen his role change with the team.

“This year I got promoted to our first assistant so I handled almost everything really,” he said. “All of our practice stuff, all of our scouting, I work hand-in-hand with our head coach and getting all of that stuff prepared, game planning, everything.”

First-year head coach Jeff Grinstead has enjoyed having someone like Delawder as his right-hand man.

“It’s been tremendous, I mean I have learned so much from him. He’s taught me with the scouting part of it,” Grinstead said. “The kids love him, the coaches love him and he’s been great for the program.”

Although he loves the Spartans, he isn’t limiting himself to staying in Alexander.

“I would definitely stay around here if the opportunity presented itself, but I’m not going to limit myself,” Delawder said. “Just take it day by day and see where we end up.”

To find out how his Lady Spartans performed in their first postseason game Monday night, check out 

You can follow Delawder on his Twitter feed at