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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Former Monett coach steps down

Friday, June 22, 2012

(Photo)
Cleo Elbert
Former Monett coaching legend Cleo Elbert has decided that 35 seasons as a varsity basketball coach at the high school level are enough.

Elbert, completing his 12th season at Thomas Jefferson and 11th as the boys basketball coach, has stepped down and has been replaced by Chris Myers, a former Monett alumni.

"It's time to slow down a bit," Elbert said. "I'm 63. I'm still active, though, and I still feel pretty young. Patricia and I celebrated our 40th anniversary with a district championship (this past season). We can now spend more time with the grandchildren."

Although Elbert is stepping down as the high school coach, he still will coach the middle school teams for the Cavaliers. He also didn't rule out a return the high school ranks. "You never know (about taking a head coaching position)," Elbert said. "I'm not closing off the possibility. The right situation could come along."

Elbert, a graduate of Pierce City High School and Missouri State, amassed a 610-317 record in those 35 seasons (including 19 with the Monett girls and five with the East Newton boys).

While at Monett, Elbert coached the Lady Cubs to a third and two fourths at state.

"My teams at Monett were mentally tough," said Elbert. "They worked hard and played hard. We wanted to guard you close and frustrate your shooting ability. Offensively, we would work the ball around to get a high percentage shot."

In 2006, Elbert was inducted into the Missouri High School Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame. Elbert stated that the honor ranked highest on his list of coaching accomplishments. His first trip to the final four with the Lady Cubs is still a favored memory

"I have been blessed to stay in a profession that I love for a long time," said Elbert. "Coaching has taught me patience and helped me become a better person."

Current Monett girl's head coach played for Elbert on his final four teams.

"Kelly was as competitive as they come," Elbert said. "If her teams have the same drive and motivation as she did as a player Monett's future is bright."


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Hey Cleo----Con-grad, you hung in there. Don`t know if you remember me but we played a few golf games together. One time we went out of town to play and I went out of bounds many time, had to pick up a bunch of time. You wrote PU on the score card so many time you named me PU. I turned 99 yrs in April but played golf at 93,could still beat Mike Lear my grandson. Bill Wilson

-- Posted by Bill Wilson PU on Fri, Jun 22, 2012, at 7:25 PM


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