A graduate of Clearfield High School and Weber State University, Jay Welk enjoyed remarkable consistency in his 24 seasons as Davis High School’s basketball coach. The Darts won the 2002 state championship, finished second three times and reached the semifinals four other times in Jay’s tenure. He compiled a 351-199 record at Davis. Counting two years as Weber High’s coach, his career record is 365-228.
As with all Distinguished Coaches honored by the Utah Sports Hall of Fame Foundation, the numbers tell only part of his story. When he retired from coaching, Jay told the Standard Examiner, “I had good coaches when I was young and I wanted to influence kids the way they did.” Jay succeeded in that regard, and he’s proud to have contributed to the experiences of his players. “Competitive sports provides an arena to simulate life – setbacks, triumphs and teamwork,” he said. Jay also is the only Utah basketball coach who can say one of his former players has competed in the Masters golf tournament. Daniel Summerhays, a member of Davis’ 2002 state championship basketball team, made his debut at Augusta National Golf Club in 2017.
Having played for Roger Reid at Clearfield and worked under Ted Smith at Roy, Jay applied the lessons he learned from them and other coaches. He competed in football, basketball and track at Clearfield and was voted by coaches as the school’s most outstanding athlete in 1976. As a teacher, the North Dakota native launched his career in math, economics and geography at Millcreek Junior High in Bountiful. He had two stints as Davis’ athletic director and currently works for the Davis School District as a healthy lifestyles supervisor. He earned a Master’s degree from Utah State in 1994.
During his time as athletic director, Davis was the top school in its classification in the Deseret News All-Sports Award competition in 2008, 2010 and 2012 and was twice a runner-up. Jay helped promote the Darts’ overall success in a Kaysville community that is highly supportive of the school’s athletic programs.
Jay has received several awards along the way, including 2014 recognition as the West Region Basketball Coach of the Year from the National Federation of State High Schools. He received a Meritorious Association in Service Award from the Utah Interscholastic Athletic Administrators in 2015.
Parents of seven children, Jay and his wife, Luann, live in Kaysville