Let’s say the Tennessee Titans head coach has to pick between two players in the draft or free agency. The prospects have similar speed, similar leaping ability, similar football smarts. But one is an Eagle Scout and one is not.
Whisenhunt wouldn’t hesitate. He’d want the Eagle Scout.
“It’s commitment. Discipline,” he says. “You learn that in order to attain the rank of Eagle Scout, you have to have those. And that’s an important part of this game.”
Whisenhunt’s Scouting days took place in Augusta, Ga. He attended a national Scout jamboree. He built a playground in Augusta for his Eagle Scout service project. He became an Eagle Scout in 1976.
But Whinsehunt’s belief in Scouting values lasted well after he left the program. Whisenhunt registered for the Selective Service after turning 18 and will never forget what his dad told him.
“He said, ‘When you’re an Eagle Scout, if you do get drafted … they’ll put you in charge because they see that you are an Eagle Scout and you understand the principles of leadership.’ So, obviously my dad was an important reason as to why I went into Scouting. Those words still echo to me.”
You can read more about Whisenhunt’s Scouting past and coaching present in the Fall 2015 issue of Eagles’ Call, the official magazine of the National Eagle Scout Association. (Anyone, even non-Eagles, can subscribe. Just click here.)
We also made this video in our trip to Nashville to meet Coach Whisenhunt. Take a look:
Top photo courtesy of Tennessee Titans. Cover photo by W. Garth Dowling/BSA.