This article is the sixth in a summer series of "Get to Know" sessions with various high school and middle school coaches in Dawson County.
Each week a coach will be featured answering questions about their personal lives and coaching careers.
This week's interview is with Riverview Middle and Dawson County High Coach Mark Thomason.
He is the school's eighth grade head boys basketball coach and an assistant coach at Dawson County High. He has been with the school system for six years. He currently teaches at Dawson County High School.
How long have you been teaching? Where and for how long?
I have been teaching for eight and a half years. I taught at South Forsyth High School for a semester.
After South Forsyth, I taught at East Hall Middle School for two years. I then taught at Riverview Middle School for four years and I have been at Dawson County High School for two years.
What sports do you coach and for how long? Have you coached anywhere else?
I have coached football for 11 years, basketball for seven years and track for one year. I have coached at White County, East Hall and Dawson County.
What do you hope players learn from you?
I hope that players learn more than just the fundamentals, but also be good young men that love life and Christ.
What are your goals as a football and basketball coach?
The team goal for football this year is to host a first round playoff game and to win region. My goal for the eighth-grade boys basketball team is to teach them the fundamentals of the game and to help them improve from last year. I also plan to get them ready for the high school program.
Tell me about your family. Where does your wife work?
God has blessed me with a wonderful wife of seven years and a beautiful baby boy of seven months. My wife Karla is an optometrist and practices at Dawson Vision in Dawsonville and Gainesville Eye Associates in Gainesville. My son Tate is learning to crawl and his favorite word is "Dada."
What are your hobbies?
My hobbies are trout fishing, watching Georgia Football and spending time with my family.
What is one thing that people don't know about you?
The one thing most people do not know about me is that I love college football on Xbox.
Where did you attend high school and what sports did you play?
I attended White County High School where I played football, baseball and ran track.
Why do you like teaching and coaching in Dawson County?
I like coaching and teaching in Dawson County because I like that the kids here are honest and hardworking for the most part.
Is there any one person, professionally, that you look up to for guidance if a situation arises?
If I have a problem in basketball, I get opinions from both Wes Greer (head golf coach and assistant boys basketball coach) and Thad Burgess (head boys basketball and head baseball coach). If I need help in football, I look to Jeff Lee (head football coach) and in teaching, I rely on Anne Hyams.
What one moment in coaching really stands out for you?
A moment that stands out in my mind of coaching is the 38-6 win over Clear Creek by my Riverview Eagles in the 2008 championship game. It isn't because of the win, but because of the relationship with my players from that team. It was also my first year as a head coach and Riverview's first championship in football.
What is your favorite pro and college teams and why?
My favorite college team is the Georgia Bulldogs. I remember when I was a kid going to my first Bulldog game and watching Robert Edwards run the ball against the Gamecocks and I was hooked. My favorite pro teams are the Braves and the Falcons.
What was the last book you have read?
The last book I read was "When Crickets Cry" by Charles Martin.