Bugg and Buchanan

New assistant athletic directors


Elena Brown

One goal for Jake Buchanan this year is to get his registered athletic administrators certification, which he will get by attending a state conference specifically for athletic directors.

The name Shauniece Steele is familiar to many students. As the athletic director of WHHS, Steele does anything and everything related to sports. Many people don’t know that she has two new helpers, known as assistant athletic directors, a position recently filled by Elijah Bugg and Jake Buchanan.

Bugg originally attended Heidelberg University before transferring to Mount St. Joseph.

“In high school, I ran track. My main sport was football,” Bugg said. “I played baseball [and] I did indoor track.”

Buchanan, a graduate of Miami University, gravitated toward baseball.

“Walnut is great. I think they have a really diverse student body,” Elijah Bugg said. “On a daily basis, I get to interact with a bunch of different kids who have a bunch of different interests, and even the staff here everybody is diverse, but they all have one common goal.”
(Elena Brown)

“I loved sports growing up. My dad is an assistant athletic director and coaches at Sycamore High School so I’ve been around athletics my whole life,” Buchanan said.

The job of assistant athletic director is one with many different tasks.

“It’s all the logistical and behind-the-scenes things that go on to let the sports happen here at Walnut,” Buchanan said.

Bugg and Buchanan have had very different journeys on how they ended up at WHHS.

“During the summer I graduated, I applied to a couple of other assistant athletic director positions, so I had my eyes open, and when I saw that the Walnut position opened up, I applied and ended up here,” Buchanan said.

Buchanan has only been working here for about a month, but already is impressed by WHHS.

“I think it’s awesome how many opportunities they have for students. When I was in high school, we didn’t have nearly as many clubs or sports teams or opportunities,” Buchanan said. “So I think that’s my favorite part so far. It’s just seeing the wide range of opportunities they offer.”

Bugg on the other hand, has been an employee at WHHS since last February.

“I’m an assistant coach on varsity and I’m the head JV coach,” Bugg said.

Bugg has many goals, both personal and professional, this year. One of these goals involves WHHS’s far-from-esteemed football team.

“I’m part of the football program, and we just had a pretty bad season. I want to do some things to try to change that going into the offseason and preparing for next season,“ Bugg said.

On a more personal note, Bugg hopes to grow his business. His business is called Competitive Edge Sports Club, where Bugg works to help train athletes.

“I’m working towards some things outside of Walnut that involves my business, which is a sports-based company,” Buggs said. “That would probably be the biggest thing that I have as a goal right now is just continuing to build that brand.”

Buchanan has a different set of ambitious goals.

“I eventually want to become a head AD [Athletic Director]. That’s my goal,” Buchanan said, “So this is the dream job at the moment because not many people have the ability to become a head athletic director right out of college.”

Bugg’s dream job is one that would take him far away from WHHS and a job that involves more of the coaching side of his skill-sets.

“I think my dream job would be to coach a division one high school or division one college or be an assistant coach or coordinator coach at the NFL level,” Bugg said.

Wherever they end up, Bugg and Buchanan are excited for the school year ahead.

“I would say my favorite part of my job so far is just the interaction that I get to have with the kids on a day-to-day basis. It’s never a dull moment,” Buggs said. “And since me and Jake have the door always open for kids to come in and out. We meet kids every day that we didn’t know [before]. We get to just talk to different kids all day and I think that’s really cool because each kid here at Walnut is really different.”