Coach Zach Kancher is not only an associate basketball coach and recruiting coordinator at Towson University, but he is also conducting Xs and Os in voting.
He is also the founder of TUVotes, a get out the vote efforts for Towson athletes.
The aim is to register new voters within the world of sports and discuss the importance of education on the issues and candidates.
It is one accomplishment to be a registered voter, but it is another to become actively involved in the political process.
“Lots of organizations within sports gear toward voter registration,” said Coach Kancher.
“Registration takes two months. I’ve registered: now what? he idea I had was to create a social media platform that would organically draw in college coaches who would then disseminate the information to their student-athletes.”
Coach Kancher already gave presentations to hundreds of schools/universities and athletic organizations.
His approach is to connect with athletes and coaches using terminology that they would know.
For example, he uses game plan templates to educate his audiences about the political process.
As a basketball coach, he will treat candidates as if they were opponents in a scouting report.
Understanding their strengths, their weaknesses, and how to be of the best caliber to triumph over that opponent.
Or in baseball terminology, reading the scouting report on a pitcher and anticipating what kind of heat they will bring.
No Need To Be Expert
Coach Kancher is also keen on how to make voting personal in the simplest of ways.
“You don’t have to be an expert on, say, Iranian nuclear policy in order to be an engaged voter. You can focus solely on the issues that matter personally to you, and then look up the candidates on your ballot who most closely think how you do on those issues” he said.
He is also adamant about addressing the real issue of voter suppression.
The reality is that this upcoming election is incumbent upon younger voters showing up.
According to Coach Kancher, 1/10 of eligible voters is from Generation Z.
15 million eighteen-year-olds are eligible to register.
Many voters of this demographic didn’t vote in 2016.
The coach understands that power and influence.
Towson Goes Further
On election day, Townson athletes will not only be showing up at the polls to vote.
They will also be facilitating democracy by volunteering as poll workers.
Along with speaking to different schools, SAVE Alliance partners with different organizations.
Among them are Coaches for Change.
Coach Kancher sees his work going forward beyond November.
“On Nov. 4th, what organizations are going to be out there actively engaging about voter engagement for your people?”
He hopes that the work doesn’t stop when there is a general election every four years.
Local and state elections are just as if not more important.
Coach Zach Kancher follows the model of Steve Kerr, Gregg Popovich, and the late Coach John Thompson, to name several.
A coach who not only seeks to win on the court but also how to win where it matters off the court.
One vote at a time.