Kenwood wrestling coach makes strides in leadership

Kenwood Academy High School wrestling coach Carlos Latimer poses with two of his wrestlers, juniors Trinity Lynch and Myles Harrell at the school, 5015 S. Blackstone Ave., Tuesday, Feb. 21. – Marc Monaghan
With almost 20 years of coaching experience under his belt, head coach Carlos Latimer of the Kenwood Academy High School Broncos wrestling team, has made strides in the areas of academics, toughness and leadership when it comes to building a wrestling program at Kenwood Academy.

“My short term goal is to help one or two guys make it downstate,” Latimer said. “That task is very tough to accomplish with some kids from the city who may have never laced up a pair of wrestling shoes before.”

In spite of some of the challenges Latimer may face, he believes that his experience as a former Junior College National Champion with Lincoln College, class of 1989, will help students excel at a higher level on the wrestling mat and beyond. He also believes that with the right roster in place along with a strong commitment from the players, that anything is possible. He even believes that the freshmen on his roster have the potential to go down state.

“Next year we’re looking at Devon Blevins,” Latimer said. “As a freshman he won the Frosoph Senior Wrestling Championship and I never had a freshman to ever win any championships, ever.”

Latimer was amazed by the skill, will, and determination Blevins. He explained that the skills of the 120 pound freshman could possibly help lead Kenwood to a conference championship next season, in addition to possibly being a foundational piece to an already improving roster .

Latimer credits his former high school coach Dennis Epps as his inspiration. After suffering an injury during his senior season at Dunbar High School Epps gave him his first coaching opportunity, which he believed was an experience of a lifetime. After Latimer learned to embrace the knowledge, skill and technique of the sport of wrestling, it encouraged him to go on and coach for schools such as Westinghouse Career College Prep, Morgan Park High School, Dunbar High School, Phillips High School and Kenwood throughout his 17 year career. He said through all of his experiences, he developed virtues such as patience, kindness and a relentless work ethic/attitude to help achieve his goals.