Veteran coach settles into new home with Panthers

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Veteran coach settles into new home with Panthers

Assistant football coach James Showers wraps up the team weight room portion of practice before the team heads out onto the field during fifth period. Showers is in his first year at Kingwood Park.

Assistant football coach James Showers wraps up the team weight room portion of practice before the team heads out onto the field during fifth period. Showers is in his first year at Kingwood Park.

Taylor Rankin

Assistant football coach James Showers wraps up the team weight room portion of practice before the team heads out onto the field during fifth period. Showers is in his first year at Kingwood Park.

Taylor Rankin

Taylor Rankin

Assistant football coach James Showers wraps up the team weight room portion of practice before the team heads out onto the field during fifth period. Showers is in his first year at Kingwood Park.

Taylor Rankin, Staff Writer

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In James Showers’ 30-year coaching career, he has coached a half dozen sports, reached the playoffs and won coaching awards. The accomplishment he considers his greatest, however, did not happen on the football field.

“I am proud of my kids because they have been successful in school and are still working hard today, which makes me feel successful as a parent,’’ Showers said.

Showers’ son, Jameill, has his masters degree and was recently a member of the Dallas Cowboys before injuries impacted him. He is now a free agent. His daughter, Hailee, is working on her masters and is in her third year as a teacher and coach in Aldine.

Showers himself has had his fair share of college, but one thing he regrets is not finishing his masters degree.

“Four years ago I was working on my masters degree at Lamar University, but I didn’t finish because coaching got too busy,” he said. “But I am working on getting my masters degree right now online.”

Originally, Showers was going to school for his business degree but decided to join the local police academy his senior year of college. When one of the assistant coaches of the Sul Ross State football team decided to move, Showers was offered a part-time job.

“The head coach came to me and asked if I’d help coach just through spring ball,” Showers said. “I wasn’t sure, so I called my favorite coach in high school, Ken Grey, and spoke to him about it.”

Through Grey’s words and the positive impact he made on Showers in high school, Showers dropped out of the police academy and became a full-time coach with Sul Ross State.

“I stayed at the university for three years before I left and got into public school and never looked back,” he said. “I became the youngest athletic director/head football coach in the State of Texas at the time — 24 years old!”

Showers’ professional accomplishments have come at five different schools: Sul Ross State University, Sierra Blanca, Fort Stockton, Killeen and Aldine. Showers said he usually moved for better opportunities of growth professionally and for better school systems for his kids.

“Coaching is quite like the military,” he said. “You move schools for different reasons, sometimes to a bigger classifications of schools, better school districts, better pay, better living arrangements or better players.’’

One of Showers’ most memorable coaching experiences was after the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. Showers was coaching in Killeen, where most of the students’ parents were in the military. He ended up spending 12 years at the high school, his longest stretch at any school he’s worked.

“I stayed in Killeen because when 9/11 hit, the U.S. started chasing Bin-Laden,” Showers said. “The kids had no parents so that was tough — being a coach and having my own children and also being a father figure to other kids.”

Before Kingwood Park, Showers opened Benjamin O. Davis High School in Aldine as the athletic coordinator/head coach. They won the district championship his first year and reached the playoffs all five seasons he was there.

Showers said the district athletic coordinator decided to move in a different direction after the 2018 season. That led him to Kingwood Park.

“I absolutely love what I’m doing now,” he said. “The atmosphere is spectacular, the staff is top notch and I get to coach the kids that live in my neighborhood,” he said. “I live four minutes from the school so I came out on the good end of the separation.”

The Kingwood Park football team attracted the attention of Showers because of their determination on and off the field, when they failed at a task they would get back up and try again.

“When I came to visit KPark football team in the spring I had other offers, but when they tested they’d try weight and not do good but they’d come back anyways and try again and they would get it,’’ Showers said.

Showers has had a lot of experience with coaching football, he is a hard worker and cares for the team.

“Showers is very knowledgeable about football, he is demanding and also really cares about the players on and off the field,” Coach Maple said. “He is a really great teacher and motivator.”

His impact on certain players was evident early. Senior linebacker Jaylan McAdams said Showers pushed him to do his best daily. When McAdams suffered a season-ending knee injury against Porter, Showers made it to the hospital as fast as he could.

“When I first came to the hospital after my injury, he came right after the Porter game,” McAdams said. “When I went into surgery that same night, he stayed at the hospital overnight to make sure I was OK.”
Showers helped McAdams stay positive about the injury and helped him throughout the process making sure he was well.

“The only thing I can say about Coach Showers is that he is a great man and a great coach,” McAdams said. “I’m glad I was able to meet such an incredible person.”

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