Many coaches give long, drawn-out speeches describing how their teams will be successful.
But Brad Wilson, the first-year softball head at St. Louis Community College, is not one of those coaches. Wilson (Belleville, Ill.) believes his team has to be cohesive, but only two words will determine the team’s success moving forward: hard work.
“(The players) have to believe in their ability first,” he said. “And they have to have trust in the coaching staff.”
Wilson is optimistic about his team’s chances this season, but a major change Wilson will face this season is having a veteran player presence. He believes he’s established a good relationship with the returning players after serving as former head coach Sharon Marquardt’s assistant for one year. He hopes a line of communication is formed, and will look for freshman players who can contribute early in the season. The Archers’ current roster features 17 freshmen and seven sophomores.
“I think this team is going to be very competitive, and I think they will step up and do a great job,” he said. “They listen well, they have a ton of drive, and they want to succeed.”
Wilson says he is low key, and he wants his players to enjoy softball, but take their education seriously.
Wilson is thankful that Marquardt and current assistant coach Ken Williams considered him for the top spot on the coaching staff.
“I like the guy and I thought a lot of him,” Williams said. “He’s been around, and he has some credentials.”
Wilson’s first opportunity coaching softball was in Millstadt, Ill., for the junior high school team. He currently has his own softball organization for teenagers, where he volunteers and teaches the fundamentals of the sport.When Wilson is not coaching softball, he likes to hunt deer and spend time with his family. He’s been married for 21 years now, and has two teen-age daughters who play softball. His oldest daughter, 19, recently transferred to play for STLCC.
Wilson is up for the challenge this spring, and will remain committed to hard work because he believes it adds up to wins.
Coaches he admired growing up were former football Chicago Bears head coach Mike Ditka, former collegiate basketball coach Bob Knight, and former Cardinals baseball manager Whitey Herzog.
“They demanded respect, and they demanded the highest level of play,” he said. “Whitey Herzog played baseball the way I want to coach softball: bunt and run. We have speed this year and that’s how we’re going to play it.”
- The Archers’ first home game is at 2 p.m. March 6 against Southwestern Illinois College.
- The Archers’ first road game is a doubleheader March 5 at Shawnee Community College.
(Story Written by Charon White)