Curry Blackwell came to LCU in the fall of 1985 on a basketball scholarship to play as a guard for the Chaparrals. Head coaches John Copeland and Larry Hays left a significant impact on Curry’s life, changing it forever.
“They had their priorities in order,” says Curry. “Our society is extremely sports oriented, and many coaches put the game first. Coach Copeland and Coach Hays were different. They were content with who they were and put their faith first. That’s how everyone was at LCU, the faculty and staff, too.”
Math professors David Joyner and Dr. David Peebles were perhaps the most instrumental faculty in Curry’s education. Both professors were sports fans and took a personal interest in Curry’s life outside of the classroom. They not only encouraged him in his academic pursuits, but they also encouraged him in his personal growth. Curry recalls many times at LCU when a powerful chapel message was exactly what he needed to hear that day, and he now appreciates the growth he experienced as a person of faith.
After graduating from LCU in 1989 with a degree in math, Curry went on to coach high school basketball and teach math. He aimed to model his coaching and teaching style after his mentors, LCU Coach Copeland and Coach Hays. He felt like he was able to connect with his players in a way that made a difference. Nevertheless, when Curry’s two sons became older, he decided to make a career change so he could have more family time.
The extra time allowed Curry to be involved in his sons’ sports activities, and he quickly noticed the challenge of finding a Lubbock gym for a team practice. Curry’s eye for business led him to discover an underutilized fitness facility in southwest Lubbock. Seeing the building’s potential, he was able to acquire and remodel the complex, opening what is now known as Premier Sportsplex
Curry is currently a successful businessman, and he believes that the teamwork, discipline, and sacrifice he learned at LCU brought him to where he is today. When asked what he would tell today’s LCU students, Curry says, “Search out the opportunities available to you. There are so many professors and groups at LCU with your best interest in mind. You can’t say that about many universities, but LCU really does. They take the time to get to know you as a person. You just have to take the initiative.”