Bott, Payne enjoying challenges of small college

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trainers380.jpg:Director of Sports Medicine Lynn Bott examines senior Matt Hiss's knee injury.:

11/30/07

While sharing experience, talent and knowledge with the students of Baker University, two individuals, who may be overlooked, have became a perfect fit in the athletic training program.

With more than 33 years of athletic training experience combined, Director of Sports Medicine Lynn Bott and Assistant Athletic Trainer Lynsey Payne have served Baker athletics for the past two years.

Payne, a Topeka native, received her undergraduate and master's degrees from the University of Kansas. Her training experience began with an internship with the Topeka Tarantulas, no longer an organization, of the Central Hockey League. While working on her master's, Payne worked as needed at area high schools through the Kansas Center for Athletic Medicine. Her journey to Baker began shortly after completing her master's degree with one telephone call and an interview.

"Lynn called and said he was looking for an assistant at Baker," Payne said. "He knew I was finishing my master's and told me about this job opening and said I should apply for it."

Payne said she was interviewed and quickly received the assistant job at Baker in January of 2006. She said Bott was one of her professors at KU and was a major influence in her decision to join the Baker staff.

Bott said he was aware of Payne working in the area and was looking for someone to fill the assistant spot.

"I knew she was available and wanting to find a job close, so we interviewed her and I'm glad we got her," he said. "She's doing a great job."

Bott started his renowned career with a Bachelor of Science degree from Emporia State University, followed by a master's degree from the University of Arizona. He then accepted an assistant athletic training and teaching position at KU and was later elevated as KU's director of athletic training where he worked for 20 straight years. What is more notable, however, is the man Bott was an assistant to. He was shown the ropes by legendary athletic trainer Dean Nesmith, one of the most respected trainers in the country and KU's first at the job.

During his 28 years at KU, Bott spent time with several famous faces. He worked with coaches like Ted Owens, Don Fambrough, Larry Brown, Mike Gottfried, Roy Williams and Glen Mason, along with numerous standout student-athletes.

Bott made the transition to Baker in September of 2005. He said his desire for a change and ties with Athletic Director Dan Harris were influences on his decision to join the Baker staff.

"I was looking for a new challenge, and I knew Dan Harris quite well," Bott said. "He used to call me all the time begging for (graduate assistant) athletic trainers to come down here...I was interested in teaching and athletic training, and it worked out."

A situation that worked out for Bott was a huge gain for Baker as well. Bott has been inducted into the Kansas Athletic Trainers Society Hall of Fame. He was also given the Most Distinguished Athletic Trainer Award by the National Athletic Trainers Association.

"That's the highest honor I can get," Bott said of the NATA award.

As there are just two trainers, both Bott and Payne split duties. Not only do they teach classes, do rehabilitation, treatment and attend practices and all home games, they are also responsible for preparing the budget, records, insurance and ordering equipment. Payne said the fall season is the busiest time with long hours.

"During two-a-day football (practices) we'll be here from 7 a.m. to 8 or 9 p.m.," she said. "We're easily putting in 13 or 14-hour days during two-a-days. Unless we have a game, Lynn and I are here regularly from 9 to 5."

Though the job entails frequent long days, Payne said she enjoys working as an athletic trainer, especially at a small school like Baker.

"I know most professors don't get to interact with students the way Lynn and I do," she said. "Seeing them in the classroom is one thing, but interacting with them in the training room is another."

Student Athletic Assistant Ali Brimblecom said she's learned a lot from Bott and Payne and enjoys a relaxed and fun atmosphere in the training room.

"It's great working with them," she said. "They teach us a lot in terms of letting us observe and treat athletes, and they ask us questions every once in a while to see if we know the answer."

country and KU's first at the job.

During his 28 years at KU, Bott spent time with several famous faces. He worked with coaches like Ted Owens, Don Fambrough, Larry Brown, Mike Gottfried, Roy Williams and Glen Mason, along with numerous standout student-athletes.

Bott made the transition to Baker in September of 2005. He said his desire for a change and ties with Athletic Director Dan Harris were influences on his decision to join the Baker staff.

"I was looking for a new challenge, and I knew Dan Harris quite well," Bott said. "He used to call me all the time begging for (graduate assistant) athletic trainers to come down here...I was interested in teaching and athletic training, and it worked out."

A situation that worked out for Bott was a huge gain for Baker as well. Bott has been inducted into the Kansas Athletic Trainers Society Hall of Fame. He was also given the Most Distinguished Athletic Trainer Award by the National Athletic Trainers Association.

As there are just two trainers, both Bott and Payne split duties. Not only do they teach classes, do rehabilitation, treatment and attend practices and all home games, they are also responsible for preparing the budget, records, insurance and ordering equipment. Payne said the fall season is the busiest time with long hours.

"During two-a-day football (practices) we'll be here from 7 a.m. to 8 or 9 p.m.," she said. "We're easily putting in 13 or 14-hour days during two-a-days. Unless we have a game, Lynn and I are here regularly from 9 to 5."

Though the job entails frequent long days, Payne said she enjoys working.

"I know most professors don't get to interact with students the way Lynn and I do," she said. "Seeing them in the classroom is one thing, but interacting with them in the training room is another."

Student Athletic Assistant Ali Brimblecom said she's learned a lot from Bott and Payne and enjoys learning from them.

"It's great working with them," she said. "They teach us a lot in terms of letting us observe and treat athletes, and they ask us questions every once in a while to see if we know the answer."

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