Blount Press Row

Peggy Bratt

The Bio Blast! on: Peggy Bratt

Peggy Bratt

Who she is: Blount Memorial Total Rehabilitation sports medicine coordinator and athletic trainer at Alcoa High School.

Why we like her: Gary Rankin coaches the Tornadoes. Peggy watches over them. If it’s too hot to practice, if a kid is too hurt to go back in a game, Rankin listens. We’ve seen her take a kid’s helmet! The only woman we know with that kind of clout with coach Rankin is his lovely wife, Sandra.

Signature moment: A while back, Peggy was at football practice for the high school Tornadoes when the middle school team wrapped up next door. A kid from the middle school had taken a hard hit near the end of the day’s scrimmage and was complaining of abdominal pain. Peggy looked him over and grew immediately alarmed. Never forget it. She the told coach, the kid’s father, “Take him straight to the emergency room. Don’t stop at the store. Don’t stop to get something to eat. Go straight there.”
The kid, it turns out, had a lacerated spleen.
Joe Black, outpatient director for Blount Memorial Total Rehab and owner/founder of its predecessor, Appalachian Therapy, performed a great service for this county’s sporting children when he assigned a certified athletic trainer to each of our four high schools as part of his business model. He used to rotate them between the schools, but, when he once tried to move Peggy, the Alcoa booster club rose up with pitchforks and torches.

Peggy makes the rounds with Alcoa booster Mike Coulter in her souped up cart. Photo by Brandon Shinn

What we’re dying to find out: What was coach Rankin’s reaction the first time you told him he had to stop practice because the heat index was too high? Don’t hate, coach.

Quoting Peggy: “No comment,” – when asked the extent of an athlete’s injury.

Without further ado, here’s: Peggy Bratt

What is your best sports memory? 
“While playing softball at Maryville College, we played in a tournament at Mercer College and beat Georgia Tech twice.

Why do you love playing your sport? 
“I just love the competition, getting on the floor and trying to be better than you were the time before.”

Who has had the greatest influence on you in sports? 
“I can’t really name one person who has that distinction.  There are a variety of people for different reasons.”

Who is the best teacher you’ve ever had? Why? 
“The best teacher I have ever had was my junior/senior English teacher in high school, Mrs. Meschen. She challenged me academically and made me a better student and person.  We still exchange Christmas cards to this day.”

What was your favorite subject in school?
“Math.”

What is the best advice a coach ever gave you? 
“Never let anyone out work you. This is a great lesson not only for sport, but also for life.”

What is the best sports movie ever made? 
“‘Hoosiers, no contest.”

What is your favorite activity outside of your sport? 
“Probably reading, I always have a book or my Kindle with me.”

Who’s your favorite superhero? 
“Superman.”

Who’s your favorite sports figure/team? 
“Right now, sports figure would be Randall Cobb. I am so proud of him and honored that I have been able to see him grow into the athlete/man he is now.”

How did you get started in your sport? 
“I grew up in Indiana–everyone plays basketball.  My neighbor played for IU and would let me shoot with her on her goal (I didn’t have one).  She always made me shoot with proper form, none of the heaving it up just to get it in.  I didn’t get to play on an organized team until the 7th grade, but was always playing pick-up ball.”

Who has been your favorite coach, and how have they helped you outside of the sports spectrum?
“Joe Huxford was my high school coach.  He was the first to show me the value of reaching out to those in need.

If you could have one super power, what would it be and why? 
“To be able to fly … would it not be so cool to be able to fly anywhere you wanted to go?”

What does being a Tornado mean to you?
(Editor: Peggy may not have graduated from Alcoa or played sports there, but, speaking for anyone who’s ever worn the maroon, she will always be a Tornado. For life.)

If you could play a different sport, what would it be?
“I would have loved to play football.”

If you could go to the World Series, The Super Bowl, the Daytona 500, or some other major sporting event, which one would you choose and why? 
“The World Series–I love to be at the ball park and watch a game, and it is several games over several days. What could be better?”

Would you sign Tebow? 
“It would depend on the needs of my team.”

 

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