Buffy Massey is man of many talents.
Massey is a professional photographer, an assistant high school basketball coach, a football stadium auto tech, and proud Lafayette High alum. Massey has also become an integral part of the Mighty Lion football program.
In between shooting school pictures, youth sports and pictures with Santa at Acadian Village, Massey can be seen making sure the public address system works properly on Friday nights or having his dog Nikon retrieve the kicking tee on and off the field after kickoffs.
The Lafayette High grad (class of 1985) and former Mighty Lion basketball player took time out this week to talk what it was like to coach his son, his tee retrieving pooch and his passion for his alma mater.
Question: How did you get involved with the football team preparations on Friday nights here at Lafayette High?
Answer: The helping out for football actually stems from helping out with basketball as a volunteer coach so I was already on campus. I probably started out helping the football team after Coach (Rob) Pool because they had some sound problems in the stadium and gym so I helped out with that first. Then one afternoon I was around and know one knew how to blow up the big inflatable helmet we have now. I was like I will do that. Then someone, I can’t remember if it was a coach or player, mentioned about running out through fog. So I built a fog machine and I have been involved ever since.
Q: This season you had your golden lab Nikon retrieve the kicking tee after kickoffs, how did that come to be?
A: Like a lot of people in south Louisiana I love to duck hunt. I have owned dogs over the years for the purpose of retrieving ducks. So I have always had dogs around but when I was kid I remember there was dog retrieving the tee for the New Orleans Saints. So a few years back I decided to see if Nikon would or could rather pick up a kicking tee. Our kicker Jacques Comeaux actually helped me with teaching him to pick up the tee. When he played on the junior varsity team, Jacques would make sure to show the tee to Nikon so he would know where it was. Nikon just took to it but we didn’t do it last season. So I worked with him earlier this season and he remembered how to do it. So we just went with it.
Q: You mentioned earlier that you began helping out at Lafayette High as a volunteer coach with the basketball team. Did your kids (daughter Taylor who graduated in 2017 and son Benjamin who graduated in 2018) have something to do with that?
A: Yes. My son Benjamin stands about 6-foot-2. He’s always been a taller kid and he just by chance liked basketball like I did. So that gave me the chance to coach him. So I coached his youth basketball team and started a AAU program. Then I was just blessed to have children who were both in the performing arts so they went to my alma mater Lafayette High. It just all worked out perfectly and I got to serve as a volunteer coach for my old teammate and friend Clifton Brown.
Q: You wear a lot different hats around Lafayette High which indicates your passion for the school. So what has it been like for you to be back here giving a helping hand at your alma mater?
A: It brings back a lot of good memories from my childhood. I joke around that I learned how to play basketball by climbing through the windows to get into the girls gym. When we were kids we would sneak in and play on those courts. I had so many memorable experiences here at Lafayette High. I am just proud that I get the opportunity now to give back to my alma mater. I mean my name and my son’s name hangs on two separate banners for district championship teams in basketball. It is sentimental thing and I love it.