Tag Archives: Coach Clatchey

Coach Pat Clatchey: A Baltimore basketball legend

Mount St. Joseph High School, where Coach Pat Clatchey has coached for 30 years, is considered a premier basketball program because of the hard work put in by Coach Clatchey, and staff.

Pat Clatchey has been the head basketball coach at Mount Saint Joseph for 30 years. In those 30 years, a lot has changed in the game of basketball, and just coaching in general, and how coaches treat their student-athletes. I have had the pleasure to know coach Clatchey since I was young. I would always attend his basketball camps, and through those camps, we got to know each other. Coach Clatchey in many ways is an old-school Italian coach. He preaches toughness and defense. He also has a great personality and is just entertaining.

Coach Clatchey, in January of 2020, won his 700th game. Clatchey deserves the recognition of being one of the great high school coaches this town has seen, including Bob Wade, Pete Pompay, and William Cain. So I decided to sit down and ask Clatchey some questions to get his take on things that span his career and life. I also got the privilege to ask Clatchey’s Assistant Coach and professional trainer, coach Jordan. I also went to numerous basketball camps and have been able to get to know coach Jordan. Jordan has been a part of the Mount St. Joseph coaching staff for a couple of years now.

Clatchey has seen a lot of change in basketball and the Mount during his time at Saint Joe. From the prominent role the three-point has taken in basketball and the building of the smith center, Clatchey has had to adapt to a lot of changes. When I asked Coach what changed the most since he started coaching, he said, “Well, this is my thirtieth year coaching here; there have been a lot of changes, but I would say the most obvious is going to be the influence of AAU basketball, and probably social media.” Clatchey, to those who know him, is well known for being against AAU basketball. When asked about AAU, Coach said, “It involves more people in the player’s circle than needed.” In my time knowing Clatchey, he would go on long rants about AAU basketball and how it is killing the game. Coach often cites how it is a money grab and not real basketball due to the absence of the team aspect. AAU is like 5 1v1s at the same time.

I asked coach Jordan how AAU and social media have affected his coaching at MSJ and his job as a personal trainer. “My training business with social media helps me promote and reach out to others.” Jordan said, “In terms of basketball, it’s made it harder to recruit. A lot of kids feel now they are superstars…most kids feel like a star, and as a coach, you feel obligated to adjust with what they do. They feel entitled that social media praises them.” Coach Jordan adds this about coach Clatchey, “What the coach says is what the players should listen to, unlike social media.”

Clatchey had also recently been invited to watch a Cleveland Cavaliers practice. With such changes in the sport, I asked Coach if his philosophy had changed in his 30 years of coaching. He said, “As years go by, you know more and different concepts from college coaches and pro coaches, and did you know I spent a lot of time studying coaches in Europe and look to learn and improve and better myself as a coach. So I would say some changed, but some stayed the same.” I asked the same question to coach Jordan, and he said, “I have been around Coach for about 7 years now. He has changed since he started. Of course, when he first started, they weren’t that good…His core values have not changed, but he has changed based on the generation of players because, of course, each generation is different.”

Coach Clatchey has also coached some truly great players. From Jaylen (Stix) Smith to Dino Gregory, he has had some legends on his team. So I asked Coach Clatchey: What player do you think made the biggest leap that you coached? Coach Clatchey commented, “I can throw out a lot of names, and most recently, it would probably have to be Jason Edokpayi his senior year. He was a guy who always had some talent and ability, but he could never be consistent for some reason. Then his senior year, he was outstanding and helped us win the championship, and he put him into a position to get a college scholarship.”

Also, Clatchey has played against some truly great teams, so I asked him: What is the best team you have ever coached against? He said, “Probably the team that in 2006, well we were 32-0 and we lost our last game to DeMatha, and I probably think that was the most talented team that we have played against. Just for the fact that they probably had about ten or eleven Divison I players, and every one of those guys was capable of scoring double figures. Then we played Oak Hill, I think it was around the same time in 2008; they were very good, and I think we lost by 8. In the league, there are a lot of great teams, but those two are probably the best.”

I followed up and asked if he ever coached against Carmelo Anthony and if he was the best player he’s coached against, and he said, “I did…Well, I don’t know about that we beat them by 28 his junior year. He was good. Rudy Gay played in our league and never won a game against us. He was good. We have had some good players and a good team too.”

Clatchey surprised me with a lot of answers, especially on how the game changed. Clatchey has seen a lot of change in his 30 years of coaching. He is a bank of basketball knowledge from leaving the MSA to joining the MIAA and seeing many Hall of Famers caliber players during his time as a coach. All in all, I think there is no more knowledgeable man about the game of basketball in this area. Coach Clatchey is truly a legend!

Andy Rossbach is a junior member of the Multimedia Journalism class.

The 2015-2016 MSJ Basketball Season in Review

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Junior Darryl Morsell in action against St. Frances in the MIAA Championship. Photo Copyright of Justin Sharpe.

Co-Authored by Greg Keidel ’19 and Christopher Flynn ’19

As spring sports begin and final cuts are being made, we look back at this year’s basketball season.

The Gaels were led by seniors Pierre Johnson, Randy Miller, and Miles Wilson; juniors Justice Kendall, Darryl Morsell, and Nigel Jackson; and sophomore Jalen Smith. The team finished 31-5 and won the BCL regular season championship.

There are many ways to describe this season, but when we talked to Coach Clatchey he said this season was “very successful.” Even after finishing last season “on a down note,” as he called it, this season was a “redemption” season.

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Senior Pierre Johnson in the MIAA Semi-Final against Glenelg Country School. Photo Copyright of Justin Sharpe.

To review:

  • The season started with two road wins and a hard loss by double digits to St. Frances at home.
  • The team dug deep and won six straight with a big road win at John Carroll and another at the Iolani Classic in Hawaii.
  • They fell then to Lone Peak, who rank 29th in the country, by only one point (47-46).
  • Again though, the team persevered and won fifteen games straight, including victories over St. Frances, Goretti, and Glenelg Country in that run.
  • Then, with four games left in the season, they fell to Glenelg Country. As usual though, the Gaels came back and six days later beat Glenelg Country.
  • The Gaels faced St. Frances in the MIAA A Conference Championship, where they lost, even though they gave great effort (75-67).
  • In the BCL tournament, the team easily passed Loyola (59-44) and Calvert Hall (93-51). They advanced to face John Carroll. Sadly, John Carroll’s Immanuel Quickley hit a 3-point shot with 1.8 seconds left, leaving the Gaels one final opportunity to get a shot off, but it was slightly to the right and missed. This heartbreaking loss gave the Gaels their 5th loss of season (51-50).

When we asked about the seniors in key roles leaving this year, Coach said, “We have a good nucleus coming back,” and mentioned the 31-0 JV team who has possible players moving up and helping fill those roles.

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Senior Miles Wilson during a match against Calvert Hall. Photo Copyright, Justin Sharpe.

We asked Coach Clatchey if there were any moments from this season that would stick with him forever. He said the trip to Hawaii in general will stick with everyone. About the team though, he said the character of the team was something he was proud of, as well as the fact that they never lost two games in a row. When asked about this season and if there were any regrets, Coach Clatchey expressed disappointment in losing the championships, but no regrets.

Losing both the MIAA championship as well as the BCL should not describe the Gaels’ season though. The Gaels were still very impressive this season with their 31-5 record. Getting to the championships was high on their list of goals to accomplish, and they did that this year. Next year they will take it a step further, winning both the MIAA and BCL Championship.

Playing in the Alhambra Tournament on March 10-12, Mount Saint Joseph started with a loss, but finished strong, beating St. Frances 65-60 and nationally-ranked Gonzaga 63-62 with a buzzer beater by Pierre Johnson.

As Coach Clatchey said earlier, “We are accustomed to competing and winning championships,” we asked how the team plans to bounce back strong for next year. He said that the players just need to get better and be committed to improving their skills, hopefully with the “understanding that it’s a team game. It’s a process, and competing and winning championships are an expectation here.”

 

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Senior Miles Wilson in action against St. Frances in the MIAA Championship. Photo Copyright of Justin Sharpe.