When I was an assistant coach for SRJC I was often at high school games looking at players to recruit for our future seasons. On one occasion I was sent out specifically to scout a pitcher who was throwing an important game against a very good team. Unfortunately, her team lost the game, but it wasn’t a blow out, and it didn’t make her look bad in any light. It was a great game, close in score, and came down to the very last inning. After the game I walked out onto the field to ask her coach if I could speak with her. When I asked, her coach replied with, “Well it’s bad timing, but you can talk to her if you want”.
I was a little taken back by his response to me. I empathize with the fact that this pitcher just lost a rough game, but the opportunity to play at the next level is a positive thing no matter what time it comes along, right? I know I wasn’t presenting her with a full ride opportunity to some D1 school, but it was an opportunity to play at the next level regardless.Despite the coaches warning, the pitcher was courteous and excited at the chance to play college ball.
Looking back, this to me as a coach, seemed like perfect timing. Most players are respectful and full of the right answers when approached by a college coach after a successful outing. This was the perfect opportunity to see how she responds to failure, which is an inevitable aspect of sport, especially softball. I was able to perceive that she handled herself well when things got tough. She was a player that kept her head up, and her teammates up when the going got rough. Seeing this in a player while recruiting, is just as important as seeing their physical skills.
Keeping your head up as a player will not only enhance your performance, and mindset, but it can also convince a college coach that you’re the right player for their team. Keep that in mind, and stay positive!
Quote of the day:
“Life is 10% what happens to you, and 90% how you respond to it” -Charles R. Swindoll