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Al McDaniels interview, February 28, 1980: transcript







On February 28, 1980, Rodney Goosby interviewed Al McDaniels (b. 1940 in Muskogee, Oklahoma) about his life in Las Vegas and his career as an athletic coach. McDaniels, referred to as Coach by Goosby, speaks primarily about his time as a coach for track and field at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, his community involvement and the city’s recreational activities. Moreover, McDaniels speaks about his education and his current research as he works on a doctoral degree in physical education. Lastly, he talks about the city’s growth and the move from empty desert spaces to housing and shopping center constructions.

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McDaniels, Al Interview, 1980 February 28. OH-01247. [Transcript]. Oral History Research Center, Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.


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UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 1 An Interview with Al McDaniels An Oral History Conducted by Rodney Goosby Ralph Roske Oral History Project on Early Las Vegas Special Collections and Archives Oral History Research Center University Libraries University of Nevada, Las Vegas UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 2 © Ralph Roske Oral History Project on Early Las Vegas University of Nevada, Las Vegas, 2020 UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 3 The Oral History Research Center (OHRC) was formally established by the Board of Regents of the University of Nevada System in September 2003 as an entity of the UNLV University Libraries’ Special Collections Division. The OHRC conducts oral interviews with individuals who are selected for their ability to provide first-hand observations on a variety of historical topics in Las Vegas and Southern Nevada. The OHRC is also home to legacy oral history interviews conducted prior to its establishment including many conducted by UNLV History Professor Ralph Roske and his students. This legacy interview transcript received minimal editing, such as the elimination of fragments, false starts, and repetitions in order to enhance the reader's understanding of the material. All measures have been taken to preserve the style and language of the narrator. The interviewee/narrator was not involved in the editing process. UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 4 Abstract On February 28, 1980, Rodney Goosby interviewed Al McDaniels (b. 1940 in Muskogee, Oklahoma) about his life in Las Vegas and his career as an athletic coach. McDaniels, referred to as Coach by Goosby, speaks primarily about his time as a coach for track and field at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, his community involvement and the city’s recreational activities. Moreover, McDaniels speaks about his education and his current research as he works on a doctoral degree in physical education. Lastly, he talks about the city’s growth and the move from empty desert spaces to housing and shopping center constructions. UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 5 History Oral Review. Interview. Mister Al McDaniels. Age 39. Lives in Las Vegas, Nevada. Address 2465 Paradise Village. Okay. Coach McDaniels, can you tell me your place and date of birth? I was born in Muskogee, Oklahoma on September 21st, 1940. How many children are in your family? Including you. I have two brothers and I’m the oldest. What is your family ethnic ancestry? Afro-American. Are you a high school graduate? Yes, I graduated from Bakersfield High School. Did you attend college? I went to junior college, Bakersfield Junior College, 1961—1960 through 1961. Graduated from there with a Associates of Arts degree. Attended the University of Nevada, Reno where I completed my undergraduate’s degree in education with a Bachelor’s of Science. And I went on and received a Master’s Degree at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas with a Master’s Degree in Education. Are you married right now? Yes, my second marriage. I have two children from my first marriage. How long have you lived in Las Vegas, Nevada? I’ve lived in Las Vegas for fifteen years. Have you done very much traveling? Yes, I’ve traveled quite extensively throughout the United States and Canada, Mexico and the Hawaiian Islands. UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 6 Can you tell me where are these places that you’ve traveled? Have you ever been in military service? No, I’ve never been in the military services. What extent have you progressed since you been living here in Las Vegas? I have probably grown the most educationally. And I am still working in that area towards a doctorate’s degree in education and my goals are to pursue that area in adaptive physical education. And that’s probably the strongest area that I’ve grown in the last ten years. Could you tell me the various changes that has been out here in Nevada since you first came here? Las Vegas has grown tremendously in the ten to fifteen years that I’ve been in this area. Population has grown, more colleges in the area, more job opportunities. It’s one of the fastest growing cities, I think, in the United States. Many opportunities for growth and development in the area so from a small town that’s been pretty much interested in tourism, it’s pretty outstanding community has grown around the gaming industry here. Could you tell me some of your property and wealth achievements? Property and wealth achievements? I really have not gained a lot in that area. I am now purchasing a home. I own property in Southern Utah that I will someday hopefully turn into a recreational type facility. And I have plans of investing in some income property in the near future, but basically that’s all I’ve achieved in that area to this point. Do you have any further goals as far as education and coaching? My educational goals have been stated as I would like to move towards a doctor’s degree in education in adaptive physical education, specifically. As far as coaching is concerned, I’d like to continue to coach and develop the nationally ranked team and have an opportunity to probably UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 7 become an international coach, make one of the national coaching tours and possibly even the Olympic games as a coach or a member of the staff. Those would be some of my goals. Do you have any kind of personal goals that you are looking forward to? My own personal goals comes from the satisfaction of being able to achieve the goals that I set academically and the goals that I set in the athletic field as a coach. Once I’ve achieved those goals than I feel like I’ve met my own personal goals also. Are you presently involved in any community activities or anything like that? Yes, I’m involved in quite a few community activities. I am the president of the Athletic Congress for the Southern Nevada Area. And we are in the process of getting organized and we are developing plans to improve track and field in the Southern Nevada area. And as president I play quite a vital role in that. I am also the developer of the Southern Nevada Officials Association and that group has now grown from a very small group to about twenty, twenty-five people. Very well ruled on the rules of track and field. And they provide a vital service to the community here as far as qualified officials in track and field. I got that group started about four or five years ago, and now they’re growing very strong service in the university and also the Clark County School District. I’m also involved in a research project that Doctor Dill from Boulder City, Nevada—Doctor Dill is a very noted physiologist and he is doing a research on desert heat, how people adapt to desert heat based upon sex, race and age. He has a grant from the Department of Education and Welfare, and I’m assisting him in that project. I’ll be working with him this summer on that. I’ll be organizing a jogging program mainly to improve fitness and also to use some of those people in our research during the summer. So those are some of the vital projects I’m involved in. I also plan to try and develop a grassroots program this summer with the assistance of the three recreation departments, the City of Las Vegas, North Las Vegas UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 8 and the county, and hopefully even Boulder City and Henderson will be involved in this. We will put on track meets during the summer at three different sites, run it through a four-week program and try to involve the whole community, and then take those athletes that do well in this through the Junior Olympic Program at the end of the summer. So those are basically the things that keep me pretty busy for now. Would you recommend Las Vegas to a young couple just starting out? Since it’s considered a fast-growing city. Well since it’s a fast-growing city and there are many opportunities, I would say that Las Vegas is as good an area as any for a young couple to start. It’s tough for a young couple anywhere. Housing is pretty expensive and it’s tough to find a place that young people can afford. But that’s the case all over and I think Las Vegas provides an opportunity for a young couple as well as any other area. So I think it’s quite a bit of opportunity here for young people (unintelligible). Do you think Nevada is an easy place to survive as far as other places and countries? Nevada can be a cut throat place I guess because of the transient type of community you have on the Strip, but there’s also a second kind of community in Nevada where there are people just like in any other place. So in that situation, people are outside of the Strip life, then it’s very survivable. But if you try to take part in the rat race out on the Strip it can be a tough life to lead. Are you presently involved in politics in any way? No, I’m not involved in politics too much. I have my own opinions but I’m not really actively involved in politics. What do you think about the presidential election this year? Well I’m waiting until it warms up before I form any decisions or opinions. Right now, I’m pretty much Carter man. Carter’s done a pretty fair job under the conditions that he’s had to work UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 9 under. So until I see a candidate that I feel is a better candidate than he is at that time then I’ll make up my mind. What do you think about the Olympic boycott this year? Do you think it’s fair towards the athletes? I think a lot of athletes are going to have some of their hopes and dreams lost in the boycott. However, I think that it’s time that we start paying attention to other things other than sports. I think sports has its place and I think that the Olympics has its value, but I think now with the Russian and Afghanistan and the attitude that they’ve shown towards world peace, I think world peace is more important. I think that something should be done, so I support the boycott. Could you tell me a little about your athletic background? Yes. Athletics is kind of the vehicle for me in getting an education. I think if I hadn’t been involved in athletics, I probably would have never gone to college. I was a pretty good football player and I excelled in track and field. And I used those two sports to get through college. And ’til high school, Bakersfield High School, I was on the track team and we never lost (unintelligible). I was always on a winning team at Bakersfield High right through my freshman year through my senior year. Individually, I was an outstanding sprinter and hurdler and long jumper. I played on the basketball team at Bakersfield high and I was also on the football team. I was the most valuable player on the football team. I went to Bakersfield Junior College and I just ran track. That’s the only sport I competed in at Bakersfield JC and I was voted the most outstanding athlete on the track team. We finished fourth in the California state meet. I was ranked fourth in the state and seventh in the nation. I won eighty 220 low hurdles that year in 1961. And we also set the national record in the 440 relay for that year which was forty-one flat. It’s been broken since but that was a good time in those days. From there I went to the University UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 10 of Nevada, Reno on a track scholarship. I was conference champion in the Far West Conference in the low hurdles and I placed third in the long jump and third in the triple jump. Our teams were also undefeated in doing the competition we were the Far West Conference Champions both years I was there in track and field. And again I was voted most outstanding athlete on both of those teams. I was talked into playing football and I did rather well. I made first team all conferences in defensive back and was voted the most outstanding back on the team. And that pretty much sums up my athletic career. Since you’ve been coaching here at University of Nevada, Las Vegas, which year do you think is your most progressive as far as athletes really producing? I would have to say this is it. This is the year. This is the year that we’ve had probably the most talent that we’ve ever had. We’ve had pretty good talent in the past, but the thing that makes this season stand out a little more, not only do we have talent, we have the most dedicated group of athletes I’ve ever worked with. Very motivated, they have some high goals and they’re paying the price to reach those goals. So we’ve already started out and obliterated the record book. In first two weeks, we’ve already broken fourteen school records so I think the record speaks for itself there. And before the season is out, I think we have a lot, many more surprises coming ’cause we’re just going to get better as the season goes. So this stands out as the most outstanding team I’ve ever worked with at the college level. It’s comparable to the team that I had when I was coaching at the high school level when we were one of the top teams in the state of California and I had about six kids on my team ranked nationally. So this is very similar to that team. How many years do you plan on coaching before you retire? Well, that’s a good question. I am not sure at this time, we’ve just gone through some budget UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 11 cuts and some salary cuts so that’s kind of a frustrating situation to go through. So I may have to terminate my coaching career sooner than I thought. But I’m gonna just play it by ear and see what tomorrow brings and make my decisions later. But if I had a good budget and the job situation was favorable, well I’d figure I have five, ten more coaching years in me. What do you think is a good budget to keep your team really progressing? As far as you being comfortable. Well you have to have at least fourteen scholarships, is what NCAA allows you to have. You have to have scholarships to have athletes. And we have four, and four scholarships just isn’t enough to really make a team. We split that up into partials and you try to get as much as you can out of that. So scholarships is one area. The other area would be an operational budget so that you can go to the good meets to get the competition, afford to stay in reasonable places, and be able to travel to the better meets, buy the type of equipment you feel that a quality team needs. So that’s the other area, is the operational budget. And then, of course, support from your university and from the media to publicize what you have out there so that you can get all the support you need for your athletes. Okay. Mister Al McDaniels, could you tell me some of your recreational activities you do here in Vegas and (unintelligible)? Yes, I have quite a few activities that I enjoy participating in. The more successful I become as a coach, the less time I find myself having to pursue those activities. However, I love playing racquetball and my skill level has improved quite a bit. And I try and play racquetball as often as possible. Occasionally, at lunch time, instead of going to lunch and adding a few calories to my belt I usually go out and play basketball just to free play with many other faculty members at lunch time. So I try to play a game of basketball. Occasionally if I have time, I like to go out and UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 12 jog a couple of miles just to work on my fitness level. Six to eight miles. So that’s another area. Probably the sport that I really enjoy most and if I had time to do it, I’d really be involved in and quite often, that’s tennis. I used to play a lot of tennis and I enjoy playing tennis, either whether it’s singles or doubles where you get a couple of people together. Tennis is one of my most—the one I really enjoy the most. Did you ever think about pursuing a professional career in sports? Yes, at one time when I was playing football, I thought about going into professional football as I said. I made first team all conferences, a defensive back. I led the conference in punt returns and kickoff returns. So I thought I had an opportunity there and I had two tryouts, one with the Oakland Raiders and one with the Baltimore Colts. And I decided at that time that I probably would only last one year because I’m not that big. With my size, I figured my time durability would be one year and I’d be out of there so I decided not to pursue it and I went into education instead. But I did have a couple of offers, I just didn’t pursue them. Could you tell me if the people in Nevada are friendly or how do they seem to you? You know, I get that question all the time from—whether you’re talking about Nevada or any other area. And when you talk about whether people are friendly not, I just kind of look at the individual. I think the way you present yourself and the way that people react to you and you react to people, you get the kinds of results. And I think if you’re an outgoing person and you’re a friendly person, then people are going to tend to be that way with you. If you’re kind of an introverted person and you have a tough time talking and get along with people, then you may get the impression that people don’t—are not that friendly. But I think that they’re probably more friendly in here than they are in some other large cities. Now Las Vegas isn’t a real large city. I think in cities like Chicago and New York people may be a little standoffish. I think UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 13 they’re not quite that way here, I think that people are a little more friendlier here. I think if you get down on the Strip though, you may run into to some people that may be unfriendly. But, as a whole, people in Las Vegas I think are pretty friendly. Do you socialize with many people in your neighborhood? Yes, when I have time. Again, I don’t have a lot of time to really be that sociable because most of my time is spent at school with my teaching duties and then with the track team, either coaching them or promoting them in some way. So I really don’t have a lot of time to really socialize. So my wife and I pretty much stick to ourselves. We have our own little circle of friends that we stick with. And when I do have time at home, I usually spend it with my family. We either travel or go out to dinner or entertain. We’re a real small, close-knit group with my family and my own friends. Do you have a history of illness in your family or anything like that? I guess I come from a pretty strong stock. We don’t get—we don’t have too many illnesses in the group. As a matter of fact, both of my grandfathers lived over eighty years of age. My grandmothers on both sides were very old before they died. My parents are in their late sixties right now and they’re very robust and energetic. And if it holds true, I guess I’m headed that way too. So really no hard disease or cancer in the family. I guess we’re fortunate but we haven’t experienced that yet and hope, knock on wood that it doesn’t happen to us in the future. Is most of your family from Texas? What part? Yes. I should know more about the lineage of my family and I do got it down somewhere, I’ve just forgotten most of it. But we generally come out of Oklahoma and Texas. Now I was born in Muskogee and my parents grew up in the Oklahoma City, Muskogee, Tulsa area. But their roots go all the way back to Texas. Now I know my mom was born in Parish, Texas and my dad UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 14 somewhere in Texas. And their families are all from Texas, so I guess the area as far as I can think back is pretty much the Texas area. Were you raised in Texas or where? I was never raised in Texas. I was raised in California. I was born in Oklahoma, in Muskogee, Oklahoma, but I left at a very young age. I guess I was about six years of age when we moved to California. And I guess I’m pretty much a Californian as I spent most of my youth in Bakersfield, California. Could you tell me some more about the changes in Nevada? Briefly. The changes in Nevada? I’m not sure what you want. (Unintelligible) change since you’ve been here. Since the first time you came. Well I remember the first time I came here and I came in from town. I used to teach in Merced, California and I was used to the blue skies and the green grass and beautiful lakes. And I spent the first night here and I woke up and I saw the beautiful lights at night and I woke up the next morning and I saw the desert and I was shocked. So I wasn’t too excited about this place when I first came here. And there were a lot of open spaces, a lot of desert area. And I guess there still is. But I’ve seen those desert areas slowly fill in with housing projects, with commercial shopping centers. So I have seen and noticed a lot of change. The home I’m living in right now, when they were building it was nothing but the desert. Came out and looked at it and I thought it would never turn into anything. And there was nothing around this place. Nothing but desert around it. Now, six, seven years later, not only is it a whole community here in this housing project, but there are four, five shopping centers that have grown around us. So I see nothing but tremendous growth as far as all the shopping centers and the houses and even the repair on the roads in the whole area. So there’s been quite a bit of growth since I’ve been here and that’s UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 15 probably been the most noticeable thing that I’ve actually witnessed since I’ve been here. When you first came here did you gamble much? No, gambling has never been a part of my activities. I kind of learned the hard way as a student at the University of Nevada, Reno. I was exposed to gambling up there and as a poor student I never had much money to gamble with so I never gambled. I did go up there after I had graduated as a graduate student during the summer time after I had my first teaching job. And I had a little money in my pockets so I thought I’d try gambling and I lost about six hundred dollars real quick so that was the last time I did any (laughs) serious gambling. So I think the most you’ll ever see me play down on the tables is maybe put a nickel or a dime in the slot machine and that’s far as I’ll go. So I’m not really into gambling. Did that get you involved in coaching? (Laughs) Finding another way to make money? (Laughs) No, the coaching thing was not a—making money was not the decision ’cause you don’t make a whole lot of money as a coach. I think if I was wanting to make money, I’d pursue some other career. I got into coaching because I guess my whole life kind of centered around athletics. I was successful and I enjoyed it so coaching was an extension of myself, I guess, to see others develop and grow and to share in their growth. So that’s basically how I got involved in coaching. What does it take to become a successful coach? Well, I—to become a successful coach is, there is no one formula for it. I might just give you some background what it takes just to get into the coaching field. You pretty much have to go through the educational cycle of getting your undergraduate degree in some area, whether it’s physical education or some other area. And to get some kind of experience coaching, whether it’s in the classroom or whether it’s working with some kind of recreational program. And UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 16 usually at the end of graduate level you learn a lot about exercise, physiology, how the body works and how it functions, a little bit about management, a little bit about teaching various skills. And then once you’ve achieved all of this in the classroom, then you gotta go out there and just learn on your own and use your own knowledge and your own practical sense because once you get out there in the world of coaching, you have to throw the book away almost (laughs) and just do it the best way you can based upon your own skills. Hopefully you do remember some of the things you learn but it’s your ability to apply those things that really work. Probably the most important thing is coaching, is your ability to communicate with your athletes. ’Cause you can have all the knowledge in the world, but if you can’t communicate it and get it across then you’re not gonna be successful. So I think the greatest amount of success that most coaches have had is their ability to communicate because I’ve seen people with a lot of knowledge but they didn’t have the ability to get it across to their athletes. Are you pretty happy with the field you decided to go into? Oh, I’m about half and half. I, you know, I’m getting to the stage now where I’m becoming more concerned about making money (laughs). So I’m looking at other areas, but in terms of the experiences I’ve had in the past, I think that the program here has not really been given an opportunity to really grow to the extent that it could. I think it has tremendous potential but it doesn’t have the support yet. I think if it had the support than I would be happy and I would be pleased but I haven’t seen it so I’m not happy from that standpoint. Are you planning to retire in Vegas for the rest of your life or move on to other places? Oh, I don’t know. I don’t really try to limit myself to any one area. I just kind of take life as it comes. I make my plans ahead of time and work towards certain goals and I’m not sure where those goals will always take me. So Las Vegas might be a nice area to stay in, but I might wanna UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 17 go back to California someday. California is really my home state and I enjoyed living in that area so, you know, if one of these days I might return to California. Are the houses in Vegas more expensive than houses in California? Housing has skyrocketed all over the United States and California is no exception. Nevada has got its share. I do feel that the houses in Las Vegas though are not as built, are not built as well. And they’re throwing them up right and left and without much quality these days. So you pay a hundred thousand dollars for a home and it doesn’t compare to a hundred thousand dollars home that I have been used to in the past. So you’re getting less quality for your money, I think. And I know that’s the case here in Nevada. I haven’t been in California for a while but I’ve heard some of the same things there. I think housing is pretty much the same problem throughout the United States. Do you think Vegas is a good place to start a business since it’s a growing town? Yes, I think there’s quite a few business opportunities here. The town is growing and I think business grows right along with the town. So if you have some kind of a commodity that you want to sell or some skills that you have and you want to take a chance in the business world, I think there are many opportunities here. Do they have any kind of recreation for kids as far as parks, amusement parks (unintelligible)? Yes, the recreation departments in this town are pretty well organized. And they provide quite a few services for the people in the community. The city of Las Vegas, the county and North Las Vegas, Henderson, Boulder City. They have all kinds of programs for not only the youth but family oriented type things. They teach skills in gymnastics, swimming. They have all kinds of recreational programs. Softball, football, basketball, weight training. You can go on and on, so I UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 18 think there’s a lot of opportunity. And when I first came here, I had an opportunity to work for the government’s youth program and I had a chance to put together a list of the educational recreational and employment opportunities for kids in this area. And I was amazed at how many there are, there actually are. I think there’s a lack of parks. I think when they build these housing projects, they should build a certain amount of parks along with them so that the kids and the families have an opportunity to enjoy them. But I don’t think there are enough parks in this area, I’d like to see more. Turn to other side please. Okay. Coach, could you tell me about the social structure here in Nevada about ten years ago opposed to the social structure today? Okay. The social structure in Las Vegas was, as far as the ethnic make-up, was probably limited to—ten years ago I think there was close to maybe fifteen percent black, quite a few Indians, Mexican-Americans, a large populous of whites and very few other foreigners from Europe and other parts of the world. However, today that’s changed quite drastically, I think. There’s probably close to thirty thousand blacks in the area, which is a large growth in that ethnic group. Quite a few Mexican-Americans, of Hispanic background. That group has increased quite significantly. I’m not too well—I have very little information on the oriental groups, but I know that that group has improved but I couldn’t compare it with the groups in the past. One area where I have known, have seen a significant change, is in people coming from, without the United States, from European countries. From Great Britain, from France and Germany and even from Thailand and places like that. There are quite a few people of those ethnic backgrounds that have moved in, so that’s basically the changes that I seen over the last ten years. Okay. You mentioned earlier that you have two kids during your previous marriage. Would you, being a coach yourself, like to coach your kids as far as track? UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 19 I think I would probably have a few problems with that. However, it’s pretty difficult for a parent to coach their own child. There’s a lot of problems associated with that. However, I think that the relationship that I have with my children is pretty good and I’ve already had some experience working with them and I don’t really see any problems involved with it. So I think that I could do an excellent job with my children. At least with my daughter, my son it might be a little different because of the lack of success he’s had in the field of athletics. He may feel a little pressure working with me. But my daughter’s had a lot of success and she has a lot of self-confidence. I have a good, strong relationship with her and that would be an easy situation there. Okay. You told me earlier that being a coach doesn’t pay much, but do you think that later in the future it’ll be, you know, progress in far as pay and would you like for your son or daughter to pursue this type of career? To answer your first question, do I think the salaries will go up in coaching? No, I don’t really think so. At the high school levels and the college levels there seems to be an emphasis right now, at least in next ten years, maybe it may change after that, but in the next ten years or so I see a very strong trend of moving towards a more intermural type approach to athletic programs. More emphasis on the traditional things in education such as the three Rs. And there’s more pressure coming from the (unintelligible) to spend money towards those things than in athletic pursuits. There may even be a break—a breaking away of athletics from the school institutions as opposed to the existing situation for—we have the scholar and the athlete. So your first question, I think I see a worsening situation rather than an improving situation. The second question, as far as my own children going into coaching I think that’s their own choice. I’ve had some enjoyable years out of it, I’ve had some disgusting years. Some—basically though I think I’ve enjoyed the years I’ve been coaching. Whether I would want my UNLV University Libraries Al McDaniels 20 own children to go through that, again they’re free to choose their own careers. However, I think that they have different interests now and they’re going in different directions. My daughter is interested in communication studies and she is a very outgoing young lady. She’s very articulate, she’s a good-looking young lady and she wants to become a sportscaster or newscaster, something in that area, so I think that suits her perfectly. My son is a young man that likes to work hard, he’s not interested in coaching. He’s interested in the business aspects of a career and I think he’ll probably pursue something in that area. So that’s basically what they’re doing and they’ve chosen those out of their own choices without any prodding from me. When you first came to Las Vegas, was the job market in teaching very high or was it difficult to find a suitable position? A job market in any specific area or just the job market in