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Southwestern Baseball "Kent" Get Enough

Updated: Thursday, February 6 2014, 11:09 PM CST

Despite what Mother Nature has to say about it, Southwestern University head baseball coach R.J. Thomas is turning up the heat when it comes to rebuilding his program.

"We are trying to get this program back to where it was when Coach [Jim] Mallon had it running like a finely-tuned engine," Thomas told KEYE TV sports.

Therefore, Thomas hired an assistant coach so impressive, that nobody even believed it.

"I thought it was a joke at first," admitted Southwestern third baseman Zach Lynch.

"Is it that Jeff Kent?," people would ask.

Yes, that Jeff Kent. The 2000 National League MVP who hit 377 career home runs and got more Pro Baseball Hall of Fame votes this year than Mark McGwire, Don Mattingly and Sammy Sosa.

"I'm a former pro baseball player who has a lot of knowledge," Jeff Kent said. "If I can pass it on to the next kid, hopefully he'll get better from it. If that happens, then cool."

Of course turning a double play is how Kent, a former second baseman, got to Southwestern. A resident of Bee Cave, Kent works with Keith Jackson's Action baseball club - a local college development program. When Jackson joined the Pirates as pitching coach this summer, he helped recruit the 17-year Major League veteran to be a volunteer assistant at SU.

"If you can pass on some knowledge you've learned through the past, like I can to them, that makes them better or  gives them an advantage over someone else - maybe they can take it and run with it," Kent said.

Kent hit more home runs than any other second baseman to ever play Major League Baseball. But here at Southwestern, he's not swinging for the fences. Kent says it's not his goal to turn all of these guys into pro ballplayers. That wasn't even his own goal.

"I never wanted to be a pro ballplayer.," Kent recalled. "I used baseball to go get an education to go get a real job. I just happened that baseball kept panning out for me."

"We college athletes and baseball players pay attention to him," said Southwestern pitcher Nino Tutino. "We listen, we don't talk, we want to absorb as much as we can from him."

After making a career of punishing pitchers' stuff, Kent threw himself a curve ball.

"There's one thing I swore I'd never do when I retired: that was be a little league coach," Kent admitted.

When he's not working with the Pirates, you guessed it - he's coaching his son's little league team.

"The younger kids, they don't know who the heck I was or what I did," Kent joked. "You were a ballplayer? You're just a fat old man."

"Recruits are interested," Coach Thomas said. "We've got middle infield guys that are looking forward to him being around next year when they come in as freshman."

Now if Mother Nature will just hold up her end of the bargain.

by Adam Winkler
Southwestern Baseball "Kent" Get Enough


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Scores & Schedules

February 28, 2015 08:07 GMT

Latest scores; Upcoming games

NBA

Friday's Games

Philadelphia 89, Washington 81

Indiana 93, Cleveland 86

Atlanta 95, Orlando 88

Golden State 113, Toronto 89

New York 121, Detroit 115,2OT

Boston 106, Charlotte 98

New Orleans 104, Miami 102

Chicago 96, Minnesota 89

Houston 102, Brooklyn 98

L.A. Clippers 97, Memphis 79

Utah 104, Denver 82

San Antonio 107, Sacramento 96

L.A. Lakers 101, Milwaukee 93

Portland 115, Oklahoma City 112

Saturday's Games

Detroit at Washington, 7 p.m.

Atlanta at Miami, 7:30 p.m.

Toronto at New York, 7:30 p.m.

Memphis at Minnesota, 8 p.m.

Brooklyn at Dallas, 8:30 p.m.

San Antonio at Phoenix, 9 p.m.

Milwaukee at Utah, 9 p.m.

NHL

Friday's Games

Colorado 5, Dallas 4, SO

Boston 3, New Jersey 2, OT

N.Y. Islanders 2, Calgary 1

Carolina 3, Washington 0

Tampa Bay 4, Chicago 0

Anaheim 4, Los Angeles 2

Saturday's Games

Buffalo at Florida, 3 p.m.

Detroit at Nashville, 3 p.m.

Carolina at N.Y. Islanders, 5 p.m.

New Jersey at Columbus, 5 p.m.

Arizona at Boston, 5:30 p.m.

Toronto at Montreal, 7 p.m.

N.Y. Rangers at Philadelphia, 8 p.m.

Minnesota at Colorado, 10 p.m.

St. Louis at Edmonton, 10 p.m.

Ottawa at San Jose, 10 p.m.

TOP-25 MEN'S BASKETBALL

Friday

No games scheduled

Saturday's Games

( 1) Kentucky vs. (18) Arkansas, 4 p.m.

( 2) Virginia vs. Virginia Tech, 4 p.m.

( 3) Gonzaga vs. BYU, 10 p.m.

( 4) Duke vs. Syracuse, 7 p.m.

( 6) Villanova at Xavier, 2 p.m.

( 7) Arizona at (13) Utah, 9 p.m.

( 8) Kansas vs. Texas, 5 p.m.

(10) Northern Iowa at (11) Wichita State, 2 p.m.

(12) Iowa State at Kansas State, 4 p.m.

(14) Maryland vs. Michigan, Noon

(15) North Carolina at Miami, 2 p.m.

(16) Oklahoma vs. TCU, 2 p.m.

(17) Louisville at Florida State, Noon

(19) Baylor vs. (20) West Virginia, 4 p.m.

(22) VCU vs. Dayton, 2 p.m.

(23) Butler at DePaul, 2 p.m.

(24) San Diego State vs. Boise State, 8 p.m.

TOP-25 WOMEN'S BASKETBALL

Friday's Games

(10) Arizona St. 46, Utah 42

(14) Princeton 67, Yale 49

Saturday's Games

( 1) UConn vs. Memphis, 2 p.m.

( 3) Baylor at Iowa State, 4 p.m.

( 7) Oregon State vs. California, 6 p.m.

(14) Princeton vs. Brown, 6 p.m.

(18) Chattanooga vs. ETSU, 2 p.m.

(21) Florida Gulf Coast vs. Jacksonville, 7 p.m.

Longhorn Football Scoreboard

Longhorn Football News

 

KEYE-TV Sports Team


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