Trenton Central Beating The Odds - My9 New Jersey

Trenton Central Beating The Odds

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Trenton, New Jersey (My9NJ) -

An art exhibit was on display on the steps of the statehouse in Trenton yesterday morning showing images of New Jersey schools that were in desperate need of state aid and repairs. Among the schools photographed was Trenton Central High School where images show mold on the ceilings and damage to the rooftop where water comes in when it rains.

Trenton Central’s school environment may make it extremely difficult for students to learn and study in these conditions, but it doesn’t’ seem to be affecting their all-star football team.

This year the Trenton tornadoes are undefeated with a record of 6-0 and they have the support of the entire community behind them. Their biggest inspiration however is their coach Tarig Holman who is doing all that he can to help these kids rise above the stereotypes and really make a name for themselves.

The coach spoke candidly about working one on one with this group of athletes and the challenges that they face. “I have the greatest job on the planet and one of the things that I feel is that this is something that I am very passionate about and what a great thing to be able to do is to go in everyday and love what you do. I feel that I am on this earth doing what I am supposed to do,” Holman said.

Holman explained what a day in the life of a Trenton Football player is like. “The big thing is getting them up and getting them to class and getting them on a schedule so that they can do the same thing day in and day out. After school twice a week there is study hall so we can make sure that they are staying on top of their academics,” he said.

For a team like this to be successful it’s all about having a positive role model and for these kids Holman is just that. “I would like for my team to try and follow my lead and I try to step up the tempo and the tone. I have grown so close to those guys so often so ya know they’ll follow me,” he said.

Currently the graduation rate at Trenton Central is about 48-48 percent but Holman says that number doesn’t represent the incredible staff that he’s working with at the school. “I have the greatest coaching staff that any coach could ever ask for. I have a tremendous athletics director who cares about the kids. I have a great principal and although the conditions at Trenton Central on the exterior are terrible, but we got some of the greatest teachers in the state of New Jersey and we have great students,” he said.

But what happens to these kids after high school? Holman says that college is definitely an option. “I’ve been coaching and teaching for the last 14 years and I developed relationships with coaches and having played in college as well I do have contacts, but the good thing is that kids sell themselves, number one by having the academic standing to allow them to get into college and to be sustainable in college and also having the athletic ability to get there too,” he said.

The College of New Jersey coach Wayne Dickens chimed in on the incredible season that Holman and his team are having this year. “They are certainly on a magical run. It is impressive to see the level of play there,” he said.

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