August 9th, 1973 – Conrad ‘Boast’ Whyte was born to Conrad Whyte Snr (Tinning Village) and Bernadine Phillip (Cooks Hill). He began his early education at the T.O.R. Memorial School before moving on to the Antigua Grammar School (AGS) in 1985. Upon graduating from school, he attended the Antigua State College (ASC) where he completed a course in Electrical Engineering within the Engineering Department. Upon receipt of a football scholarship, he went on further to pursue tertiary studies at John Browne University in Arkansas where he majored in Business Administration and minored in Office Administration with a concentration in Computer Information Systems.
As a child growing up, Whyte had two interests in particular; football and music. He recounts that his interest in football stemmed from going to watch the games as a child and eventually realising that he was good at playing as well. His official entry to the sport took place when he was between the ages of 10 and 11 after having the opportunity to participate in the Shipwreck League which was a league owned and operated by Stanfield ‘Shipwreck’ Joseph. Shortly after, at the age of 14, he became a member of the Empire Football Club. During his tenure with the team, he celebrated 6 championships in 1988 and 1992 and their 4 year winning streak from 1997 to 2002 and also served as captain for at least 2 seasons. Whyte notes that it was during this time that he saw his greatest accomplishments as a Premier Division player by scoring the highest number of goals in a season: 21 in 2001 and 26 in 2002. This earned him the The Golden Boot Award which is an award given to the person scoring the most goals in the league. Though others have come close, Whyte’s record remains intact.
He also encountered his most memorable game which saw Empire defeating Parham 2-1. This win was significant, he stated, because he was the player who broke the 1-1 tie by scoring the final goal with the last kick of the game and this coupled with the fact that Parham was one of the team’s major rivals at the time. Apart from Empire, Whyte played with the Antigua and Barbuda national team for 12 years. He also represented the AGS and ASC football teams during his time at each institution and also had the opportunity to serve as a captain on each team.
Whyte officially retired as a player in 2004 and went straight into coaching. He started off with St. John’s United in the second division but was lured away shortly after by Westham. Following his stint with Westham, he returned to Empire where he functioned as a coach until he migrated in 2010.
Whilst enjoying much success in the football arena, Whyte also found the time to develop his other interest; music. This interest evolved in similar fashion to football where he heard the playing in the pan yard coupled with melodies he would overhear in his commute to and from school and decided to have a go at it himself. After realising that he had a knack for playing the pan, he found mentorship in Curtis ‘CC’ Cochrane whom he would visit to ‘catch a tune’ daily. Whyte went on to play with the Halcyon Steel Orchestra in the single tenor section from 1984- 2010. While in the orchestra, he found himself filling in for the drummer a number of times when they had to play out and used this as an opportunity to keep on improving his abilities as a drummer. His dedication to the craft allowed for him to catch the eye of Mervin ‘Sleepy’ Edwards who was seeking out a drummer for his band ‘Taxik’ that he performed in alongside Claudette ‘CP’ Peters. In 2007, Whyte made an enterprising move by forming his own band, ‘Nu Edition’ with Tian Winter as the lead vocalist. They played the hotel circuit in Antigua as well as for carnival and did gigs in Barbuda and Montserrat.
Currently, Whyte resides in the United States and serves as 1st Assistant Coach and Recruiting Coordinator at Merrimack college 10 miles north of Boston and is going into his 4th season of NCAA division 1 football. Prior to this, he spent two seasons at Eastern Nazarene College in Massachusetts in NCAA division 3 before moving on to Stonehill College and Northeastern University both in division 2. Despite his present geographical position, Whyte continues to give back to the sport locally by sending 4-5 barrels of football gear annually that are dispersed to various teams around the island including schools.
As it pertains to his thoughts on sports development in Antigua and Barbuda, Whyte points out that more emphasis needs to be placed on ensuring there is a balance between education and athletic ability as well as getting recordings of athletes in action that can be shared with recruiters to spark an interest. His advice to up and coming athletes, ‘go to school, get your education and become good at the sport’.