There was once a time when all Tim Barnett wanted to do was represent Mexico High School on the varsity wrestling mat.
No that he's the athletic director at Moberly High School, those goals may have been adjusted, but it's the lessons he learned while grappling that have allowed him to find success where others couldn't or haven't.
"The thing about being a part of athletics is that it provides a lot of great life lessons on how to be humble whether you win or lose, how to strive for more whether you win or lose," said Tim Barnett. "Because the moment you become satisfied is the moment your get passed by. It taught me to always be better than you were the day before."
As a member of the class of 1998, Tim Barnett was a three-year letter winner and three-year wrestling team captain who earned All-District honors as a senior. He also was a three-year letterman and one of three team captains in football, winning all North Central Missouri Conference accolades in 1997-98.
"The coaches that I had in wrestling where Ray Heaton and Tom Allen. Both of them taught me a lot about the sport and what it takes to handle the grind of the season," Tim Barnett said. "For varsity/JV football our head coach was Jeff Moore and the assistants were Bernie Rothrock, Mike Hall and Tim Caldwell. Our freshman coaches were Andy Baker and Keith Louder. All of them were great role models for us."
One connection Tim Barnett still has to Mexico athletics is his brother Adam Barnett, who currently is an assistant varsity Bulldogs football coach. His role with the team is to work with the offensive and defensive linemen. Previously that's a role he took on during his prep playing career at Mexico, as well as during his time on the gridiron for Lindenwood University.
"I absolutely love it. He has a lot of knowledge about the game and understands what it takes to be successful at that level, which hopefully his players understand and can learn from," said Tim Barnett. "I am though torn a little when Moberly and Mexico play each other in football. I want Moberly to win, but I also want to see the players, that Adam coaches, do well because it's a reflection of him as their coach."
After graduating from Columbia College, Tim Barnett got his foot in the door at Moberly in 2003 when he was hired to teach social studies. That commitment then extended to the summer of 2004 before becoming a 12-year passion that ended with his current position as athletic director. During that time he also coached middle school football and high school wrestling.
"From the fall of '94 to the spring of '98, Mexico High School was a great place to be. We had great teachers, administrators and staff," Tim Barnett said. "It also helped that our athletics teams were successful. I'm believe that if your school is doing well in athletics or activities then the climate of your school is usually pretty good. During that time our football team made it to the semi-finals and our basketball teams were in the Final Four three out of the four years, finishing first, second and fourth."
In that same time Barnett stated that the Bulldogs wrestling program finished in the top-10 for Missouri based on the strength of several state champion and multiple placers.
"Our track, baseball and cross country teams were good. It was a blast," said Tim Barnett.