This is the first of many etbusports.com feature stories talking about the ETBU athletes experience as an athlete.
Seth Hubbard is East Texas! Hailing from San Augustine to Nacogdoches to Garrison, Hubbard is Johnny Cash’s song “I’ve Been Everywhere, Man” in East Texas on the Route 59 corridor. Born in Nacogdoches, Hubbard has spent his life in East Texas growing up in a football coach’s house.
“I like to tell people that I have 22 years of coaching experience as my dad is a head football coach and from the time I can remember I have been around a football field,” says Hubbard. “I can remember running around all these huge athletes.”
The East Texas football blood runs through his veins and it was his dad that helped him figure out his way to East Texas Baptist University. Hubbard did not start out a Tiger as he chose to play basketball in college at the University of Texas-Tyler. Coming out of high school, Hubbard had scholarship offers to play basketball and chose to stay close to home by going to the University of Texas-Tyler. It only took him one semester to see how much he missed and loved football.
“I was helping my dad coach his football team my first semester in college while I was at Texas-Tyler and after about October I realized how much I missed football and how I had it in me,” quotes Hubbard.
So Hubbard went back to his East Texas roots calling the coach that had recruited him in high school, Mark Sartain. One phone call is all it would take for Hubbard to become a Tiger and switch his collegiate sport from basketball to football.
“I called coach and said ‘I want to come play football’ and he said ‘well, we would love to have you,” and that is the beginning of Hubbard’s experience at East Texas Baptist University.
“I made one visit here for football and I was sold on Coach Sartain and everything he talks about being a family and it has been great.”
Now in his fourth year at East Texas Baptist, already earning a degree and working on his master’s degree, Hubbard is what the East Texas Baptist football program is about. God, Family, and working on becoming a better man.
“Literally everything that Coach Sartain does is a perfect example of how to walk the Christian walk. There isn’t a minute here where Coach Sartain isn’t looking for an opportunity to make us better men as Christians. And that is what I have gotten from him is don’t let any opportunity go by to share your viewpoint or to share Jesus with somebody,” quotes Hubbard.
In a program that is always looking for teaching moments and equipping young men for the world, Hubbard has also had influence from coaches on the East Texas Baptist football staff. The foundation of the program is developing men to become better, Godly men after they leave the program and that is what quarterbacks coach Thad Fortune has done for Hubbard. Fortune has been an example of a Godly man that he can look to and has learned from.
“I accredit one of biggest things I have learned here from my quarterback coach in coach Fortune is to stay in the word non-stop. Sometimes your daily quiet times aren’t enough and that is what he has instilled upon me that there’s nothing in the Bible that I am going to face that hasn’t happened before somehow or someway. Just to dig into the Bible and trust it and what it says.”
The past two years Hubbard has spent many hours with Fortune looking at game film, learning the offense, and preparing for opposing defenses. The collegiate quarterback does a lot behind the scenes that people do not know about with the preparation for the week. This year, Hubbard’s preparation takes a different look as a non-traditional student going to graduate school and holding a teaching job working 40 hours a week. Hubbard graduated in spring 2012 and was hired in San Augustine teaching freshman algebra.
“My day starts at about 6:30 a.m. every morning. I teach at San Augustine ISD in San Augustine, Texas, and teachers report by 7:15 a.m. Our first bell rings at 8:00 a.m. and I leave about 1:50 p.m. every day as I drive an hour 15 minutes over here,” says Hubbard.
By the time Hubbard comes to East Texas Baptist, he has already put in a full’s day work and now prepares for his other job as the Tiger starting quarterback. His gears switch from preparing for freshmen in high school to getting ready for the next opponent that East Texas Baptist will face. With his time teaching at San Augustine and preparing for his next opponent, he also has graduate class on Monday nights.
“After getting taped and talking with coach Fortune, I am on the field by 4:15 p.m., and except for Monday nights when I have class until 9:00 p.m., me and coach Fortune will stay after and watch film or do something to get ready for the next opponent.”
The preparation continues after practice as Hubbard looks to tweak the little things that need to be done to lead his team to victory. Not just anybody can become a college starting quarterback as discipline and skill is needed along with leadership skills that will push the team forward.
“There are a lot of things that nobody notices that go one. I spend time every day after practice with coach Fortune doing extra drills and I can’t even tell you how many hours of video I watch every week preparing for the next opponent. On road trips I study the packet and scouting reports instead of watching a movie. When people aren’t looking that is when we get a lot of our work in.”
The life items he has learned at East Texas Baptist from coach Sartain and coach Fortune has led Hubbard to this point in his life where he now is the leader of men. From taking command of his team to teaching freshmen at San Augustine High School, lessons learned at East Texas Baptist from his time as a football player are being used.
Hubbard is taking what he has learned at East Texas Baptist into the real world as a freshman algebra teacher. He has a chance to talk to the students about athletics and life and what he has learned as a player.
“When there is a time when we are not doing work in the class room I almost have to shoo them away because they are constantly asking ‘coach Hubbard what should we do in this situation’ or ‘what should I do with this play’ as they are starving for information,” says Hubbard.
The overall experience at East Texas Baptist University has prepared Hubbard for those questions from the freshmen that he teaches. His time in the Tiger football program has laid a foundation for him to go into the world as a Godly man and spread the word. That is what Tiger football is about – preparing the man to enter the world and make a difference.
That is what Seth Hubbard does now on a daily basis in East Texas is making a difference in the lives of high school students and on his team as the starting quarterback. His roots are deep in East Texas and his foundation is stronger now after being a part of the Tiger football program for four years. East Texas is where Seth Hubbard grew up and for now East Texas is where Seth Hubbard will stay as he sings Johnny Cash’s song “I’ve Been Everywhere, Man” along the Route 59 corridor.