The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO


February 7, 2010

‘We teach life lessons’

Skywalkers ... reaching for the sky

By Rich Brown

Scott Schulte is a man of many hats ... especially when it comes to basketball.

The first hat this Webb City man wears is that of a coach and it is through mentoring elementary, junior high and high school players that he comes to adding a number of other hats to his repertoire.

Schulte, a 1979 graduate of Missouri Southern where he played basketball himself, decided to form the Skywalkers about 15 years ago with the idea of bringing youngsters together to train them to be good players, emphasizing a strong team concept. But he soon found his organization would require much more than just a coach’s expertise.

Other hats would have to be worn. Schulte, who migrated south from St. Louis after attending Kirkwood High School, felt his strong Christian faith and principles that had guided him through life could be used in a meaningful way to help many of his pupils beyond the scope of basketball. Thus, he assumed the hat of a Christian adviser. In so doing, he also took on the role of a motivator and counselor, as well as a big brother and father figure.

The Skywalker Academy has come to be recognized today representing all those concepts and, at the same time, holds the distinction of being among the finest training grounds for young basketball players of any around.

“We teach life lessons,” said Schulte, who guided his Skywalker 17-and-under team to second in the nation at the 2000 national AAU tournament. “I love getting kids who people are giving up on or don’t think can make it or are having confidence problems. I get them in here and say ‘hey, man, let’s go to work.’ You would be surprised what can happen if you start doing the right things.”

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