By Kyle Siegel
Sedalia native Ben Lyles has been heavily involved in football, in one capacity or another, for a large portion of his life.
Lyles graduated from Smith-Cotton in 1997 and played football for the Tigers.
During the 95-96 season Lyles was the varsity quarterback and in his senior year he split time as quarterback and wide receiver.
During his time at S-C he received all-conference honors in football.
After high school Lyles attended the University of Missouri, where he received his B.A. in agribusiness management. He went back to school in 2005, and he received his M.B.A. in business administration and technology management in 2006.
“I went to Mizzou and actually walked onto the football team. I played the last three years under Larry Smith.
“I spent time playing receiver and defensive back. I really enjoyed playing wide receiver. I had a really good receiver coach, Andy Hill,” Lyles said.
Never one to rest on his laurels, Lyles played four seasons of football with the Mid-Missouri Outlaws as wide receiver, before moving on to the head coach position in 2011.
“I am a rookie head coach. When Travis Jobe stepped down, I had the opportunity to coach and I jumped at it,” Lyles said.
He added, “I have always been pretty involved. I helped with the designing of the offense. I always had the plans, when I was done playing, to stay with it.”
Recently Lyles was named the head football coach at Sacred Heart.
“I actually officially took over on July 1. This fall will be my first season,” Lyles said.
Lyles plans on having a strong roster of players for this season at Sacred Heart.
“We are expecting to fill that initial roster with 20-25 kids, and as we have more success we hope to have more young men in the school come out and participate,” Lyles said.
While football may be an important part of his life, his family is the most important thing to him.
Lyles has been with his wife Beth since high school and together they have five children. His children are Chase, Trent, Isabelle, Addison and Maxwell, whose ages range from 14 years to eight months old.
“If you look at it all, my family is very involved with it all,” Lyles said.
Lyles was asked what activities he enjoys when he can find some free time.
“I really used to enjoy playing golf. I don’t have that much time for it anymore. I love doing this so much. It is very rewarding. I do try to find time to take my wife out to dinner and movies once in awhile,” Lyles explained.
Ben also works for Alcan Cable as a continuous improvement manager, and he has been there since 2002.
“I love my job and Alcan has been very rewarding to my family and myself,” Lyles said.