Thursday, September 01, 2011

Superlatives today are often times used so casually or cavalierly that they lose their meaning. The pepperoni roll we just ate was “the greatest” or the movie we just saw was “the best ever.”

But when it comes to athletic trainer Bob Cable, the words just don’t seem to do him enough justice. Ask any of the thousands of student-athletes that have come through his office and they’ll all tell you he is the best at what he does and they mean it. They know it and Fairmont State knows it.

And, the nation knows it as well.

Cable received National Athletic Trainers’ Association’s 2010 Division II Head Athletic Trainer of the Year award last summer. This honor recognizes the outstanding efforts of a certified athletic trainer employed in the collegiate setting at a Division II university. NATA’s College/University Athletic Trainers’ Committee (CUATC) selects a winner based on active community and campus involvement; volunteer service; national, district and state athletic training association participation; promotion of the profession; and exceptional performance in the role of collegiate athletic trainer.

“Bob is richly deserving of the award,” said NATA College/University Athletic Trainers’ Committee Chair Charlie Thompson, MS, ATC. “He has dedicated his career to providing quality health care services to collegiate athletes and has worked tirelessly toward the betterment of the athletic training profession.”

“It’s an honor to be considered, let alone win it,” said Cable, who was named the top trainer in the state of West Virginia in 2007. “It’s just one of those things where you keep your head down and keep working hard -- this is not something I ever expected.”

While the award may not have been expected, it’s certainly not surprising. In some situations, Cable spends more time with some student-athletes than they do with their own coaches helping them get healthy. His office is a hub of activity with stories being swapped while treatments are being given. His knowledge in the field and professionalism are unquestioned but what Cable does is what all the great ones do: he gives more. If it means coming in before the sun even thinks about getting up for the day because that’s the only time the student-athlete can do a treatment, he’ll do it. If it means getting a second or third opinion, he’ll do it. If it means just listening to any kind of problems or issues, he’ll do it. He virtually never clocks out and is always there for the student-athletes. His extra effort has never gone unnoticed by the people he’s served, which is evidenced by the fact that he is one of the first people that receive a visit when a former player returns to campus. The national award is the appropriate recognition for the work Cable has put in at Fairmont State for nearly two decades.

“Bob is a great asset for Fairmont State,” said Rusty Elliott, director of athletics. “He makes us better as an athletic department not only because of what he does in helping our student-athletes get healthy and get back into competition but also because of his love and commitment for Fairmont State. When moms and dads drop off their kids to participate in athletics at Fairmont State, they have confidence knowing that they won’t be treated by anyone better in the country than Bob Cable.”

Fairmont State’s mission in athletics is to strive for excellence and to compete at the highest level. Bob Cable is an example that reaching these lofty goals is possible with nothing but hard work, dedication, and a little extra care.

About this story: This story, written by Adam Zundell, was featured in the Summer 2011 edition of maroon & white. Click here to view this edition. To request a paper copy contact Beth Martin at (304) 367-4009.