Boys Varsity Basketball · Breakthrough season: Kent City coach opens up about struggle with depression


There is certainly no question that Coach David Ingles loves basketball.  Anyone familiar with Kent City Basketball has seen Ingles on the Eagle bench, probably wearing some crazy looking pants, instilling his love for the game unto his players.  Seldom a game goes by that Coach Ingles is not complimented by the game officials.  The same theme is communicated time and time again prior to and following games — “We enjoy coming to Kent City because your coaches coach.”  And if you have not been around the Nest during an Eagle practice, it is very much the same, with the exception of the fancy trousers.   Just by listening to a David Ingles practice, it is clear that their is a love for the game.  Lots of coaching, lots of encouragement, and lots of laughter.

Following their heart-breaking loss in the District Finals to North Muskegon, Coach Ingles gathered one of the most successful teams in school history in the locker room at Ravenna High School.  He told the team, “You have helped me, more than I could have ever helped you.”  Now Coach Ingles is telling his story in an attempt to help anyone who is struggling with depression.  Earlier in the season, the Local Sports Journal asked to do a story on Coach Ingles’ battle with depression.  The Eagle coach agreed to share his experiences in hopes that it might inspire others who are feeling the same way to seek help.

The team slowly filed out of the locker room as one would expect a team who just lost their first game in 22 tries.  There were plenty of tears — lots of hugs — and even a smile or two as teammates and coaches reminisced on a great season.   And although it probably was not in the forefront of their minds on that night, every member of that team and anyone who stood in that locker room was helped by David Ingles.  The help may not have come on that day or the next.  His helpfulness might not benefit them for months or even years.  Heck, it might not even be something that will help them personally, but perhaps someone else in their lives.

Coach Ingles certainly coaches — no matter what the topic.  His courage in fighting his depression was a lesson for the team and the community.  The 2017-2018 Kent City Eagles will look back on this past season as a success for their 20-0 regular season record, for their 10-0 CSAA Championship record, and for their 21 game winning streak.  However, whether or not they ever play another second of competitive basketball, this year’s team will also remember the importance of seeking help if faced with depression.  It is certainly not an easy topic to discuss, but it an absolute must to get the support needed to overcome it.

To read Coach David Ingles’ story by Steve Gunn of the Local Sports Journal, use the following link:

Breakthrough season: Kent City coach opens up about struggle with depression