at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Columbus for the 2008 Ohio High School Baseball Coaches Association State
Clinic. The event's attendance makes the clinic
second only to Texas as the nation’s top high school state conference. “Put Me in Coach” served as this year’s motto and speakers included Billy Ripken and
Michigan head coach Rich Maloney.
COLUMBUS – Over 1,300 coaches joined together last Thursday through Saturday at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Columbus for the 2008 OHSBCA State Clinic. The clinic’s attendance makes the great Buckeye State event second only to Texas as the nation’s top high school state clinic.
“Put Me in Coach” served as this year’s motto for a clinic that got started Thursday night with keynote speaker Billy Ripken as well as Michigan head coach Rich Maloney. Ripken talked about infield positioning while Maloney discussed keys to developing a championship program.
The festivities continued Friday with a morning of mini-clinics and an evening of more speakers; however, the highlight of day two came in the afternoon with the hall of fame luncheon. At this year’s banquet, 16 student athletes received scholarships, six assistant coaches were honored for their time and efforts and 30-plus coaches were awarded for milestone years of service and win totals. Included in that group were Tony Ferraro of Huber Heights Wayne who reached the 400 win mark and Tom Randall of Kenton Ridge and Phil Krouskop of Perry who joined the incredible 500 win club.
Last year’s state champions and coaches (Bill Driesbach, Lakota West; Matt Koenig, Canfield; Dave Klontz, Heath; and Bill Sturwold, Fort Loramine) were honored as were last year’s final coaches’ poll winners (Mike Cameron, Cincinnati Moeller; Chris Kaczmar, Walsh Jesuit; Ed Yates, Adena; and Mike Wiss, Minster) by President Chuck Rinkes. Yates also received the OHSAA Integrity Award which was presented by OHSAA Assistant Commissioner John Dickerson.
Rinkes also presented the Bluffton College baseball program with a donation from the OHSBCA.
Following the honoring of these well deserved awards, the attention shifted to the four HOF inductees. Phil Callaghan of Dublin Scioto, Rick Gold of Piqua, Curt Karpinski of Elyria, and Mike Ryan of Perry combined to makeup the 34th class of the OHSBCA Hall of Fame. Those four legends join the previous 109 inductees on the list of Ohio’s finest dugout leaders.
Callaghan was a member of the 1979 AA OHSAA State Championship team at DeSales before going on to play his college ball at The Ohio State University. Callaghan coached for 21 years – first 10 at DeSales and then 11 at Dublin Scioto – and retired with a 460-140 record (.767 winning percentage). Callaghan was introduced at Friday’s ceremony by former player Scott Marple.
Gold, a 1969 alumnus of Graham High School and a 1973 graduate of Ohio Northern University, coached for 29 years at Piqua compiling 505 wins, 10 league titles, nine sectionals, four districts, and regional finalist twice. Serving as Gold’s presenter was longtime athletic trainer at Piqua, Dave Palmer.
Karpinski was a 1968 graduate of Keystone High School before playing four years of college ball at Baldwin-Wallace. After nearly a decade of various coaching jobs at the high school and college levels, Karpinski became the head coach at Elyria in 1988. Over the next 17 seasons, Karp recorded 236 wins including six conference titles, five district tourneys, three regional appearances and one trip to the Final Four. Brett Heighberger had the role of presenting Karpinski. Heighberger played for Karpinski, coached under Karpinski, and now continues to work in administration at Elyria High.
The final inductee to take the podium was Ryan. Ryan was introduced by Pat Giannell, a former teammate and longtime friend, who referred to Ryan as “the brother he never had.” Ryan served as the head coach at Perry for 26 years where he won 396 times and was a member of the 2004 Final Four. The former Kent State baseball player also coached Perry to nine conference titles and 10 sectional crowns.
The clinic wrapped up on Saturday morning with an opportunity for coaches to take the mandatory Sports Medicine Seminar. Coaches also had a chance to listen to three final speakers including George Powell from Otterbein College talking about offensive strategies, Brad Warnimont of Rio Grande teaching base running and Brian Cain who discussed the importance of coaching the mental side of the game.
High School baseball is just a little over a month from getting underway. Pitchers and catchers get started on February 28th before coaches welcome the entire team on March 10th. Monday, March 31st will be the first day games can begin, and most teams – if weather permitting – will get things going with non-conference action.