The Western school board on Tuesday night approved Josh Larsh as the school’s new athletic director, handing him the reins of the Panther programs.
“I’m very excited just for the opportunity to lead an athletic program of Western’s caliber. [This] is obviously a big opportunity in my life and I look forward to try and take Western’s athletics to the next level,” Larsh said.
“My dad was a high school principal for many years. I always wanted to be either an athletic director or head basketball coach. The opportunity for athletic director presented itself and I went down that avenue.”
Larsh is a 1998 Clinton Prairie graduate who then graduated college from Purdue. His father, David, now retired, was the principal at Clinton Prairie. While at Purdue, Larsh was the head student manager for the men’s basketball program under former coach Gene Keady.
Larsh was picked from a candidate pool of approximately 60 applicants. Five candidates were interviewed.
“Josh, first of all, has been at Western the last couple years and has coached a variety of sports,” Western principal Rick Davis said. “He’s also passionate about Western and has a vision for its future.
“I think a lot of [his vision] has to do with building the sense of community and to have Western represent itself well at all times on and off the court. Beyond that, recognizing that the student-athlete has an important role in the community and [we] want to maximize that role.”
Larsh’s ideas resonated with Davis.
“My overall goal is to build a Western athletic family,” Larsh said. “It’s a family atmosphere, something I picked up from coach Keady at Purdue.
“My hope is we can build kids through education and character and obviously athletics and that will benefit them for the rest of their lives. If they have a rewarding experience in high school, then after college they’d be more apt to help out with the athletes we have.”