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Bruns stepping down as BP head coach

blooming prairie, basketball, john bruns
Blooming Prairie girls’ basketball head coach John Bruns, right, celebrates his 300th win as a head coach with his daughter, Bobbie. Bruns will step away from his role as the Awesome Blossoms’ head girls’ basketball coach after eight years in the role. Submitted photo
Johnnie Phillips, Sports Editor

Longtime Blooming Prairie boys and girls head basketball coach John Bruns will step away from his role as the girls’ head coach at the end of this academic year after 24 combined seasons coaching basketball for the Awesome Blossoms.

Bruns spent the past eight seasons coaching Blooming Prairie’s girls’ basketball team to a 119-80 overall record and accrued a 202-200 record as the boys’ team head coach from 1999-2015.

“It was a tough decision to make and something I had been going back and forth on for a while. The basketball season in the winter is a grind between games, practices, scouting and film. Trying to balance that with family time and watching my daughter, Bobbie, play at Gustavus Adolphus… All of those things contributed to making my decision to step down,” said Bruns.

Blooming Prairie fans will still have the opportunity to see Bruns lead as head coach of the cross-country team, but it will surely be a new scene in the BPHS gym when Bruns does not hit the hardwood as the bench boss for the Awesome Blossoms in the 2023-24 season.

Bruns first came to Blooming Prairie as a 24-year-old taking the job straight out of college and wasting no time in starting his career as both an educator and a coach.

“It was my first job and I’ve been here ever since. I wasn’t born a Blossom, but I’ve spent over half of my life here at this point. I’ve watched my kids grow up and play for BP, but I’ve also seen so many amazing kids go through our school system. I still see some athletes from my first years coaching around town and it’s pretty crazy to look back on all that time,” said Bruns.

While Bruns has had a positive influence on countless Blooming Prairie athletes over the course of the years, one athlete in particular that has looked up to Bruns during his career is his daughter, Bobbie.

“I too want to be a coach and a teacher one day, and to have him be the perfect example of who to be as a person and a professional is exactly what I need. If I can be half as good of a coach as my dad, I would be happy because he’s the best,” said Bobbie Bruns.

As a Blossom for life, the elder Bruns noted that he does not have any particular memories that stand out from the lot in terms of athletic achievements at BPHS.

Instead, the memories that will last a lifetime are the ones that transcend the boundaries of a gym, field or track.

“I think having that opportunity to watch students grow from young kids to adults with families and professions is the most rewarding part of teaching. Seeing that progress and watching them go out into the world to do amazing things, whether they choose to come back home or not, is an incredible feeling.”

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