Spring, or at least the spring season, is right around the corner


By: Nate Jervey
Assistant Sports Information Director

It has been a full two weeks back in the swing of things following a much needed break and with both the basketball teams in action and the indooor track and field teams opening up next weekend it surprised me a little bit yesterday when Brian, my boss, asked me how my preparations for my spring sports was coming. Whoa, spring sports? It is still January right? Yup, the calendar does not lie and today is definitely Jan. 15. So why in the world should we be worried about spring sports already? Because as assistant baseball coach Brian Smith reminded us the other day, our first baseball game is less than a month away.

This year, baseball opens on Feb. 13 and the first home game Feb. 16. Seriously, baseball in February!!! I am pretty sure that Abner Doubleday did not have baseball in February in mind when he invented America’s pastime. However, I am sure that the reluctance that I express in seeing baseball start so early is not shared by the players, who are probably chomping at the bit to start up again following fall ball and get back on the field — that is if they go out and shovel it off. The saving grace for those of us who work out at the baseball games is that we are out of the elements in the press box and space heaters are a wonderful invention. Those people braving the elements outside in hopes of seeing a W&L victory, well you a braver man (or woman) than I.

I just checked the farmer’s almanac, which is much more reliable than most people realize and it is calling for snow, ice and cold temperatures for the first two weeks of February. I just hope that the concession stand is quick with the coffee and hot chocolate. While I may sound awfully cynical about the spring season starting so soon, I really do enjoy baseball and the start of the season is something that I look forward to. I was just a little surprised to find out that we were starting to play home games in February. Being from Michigan, we keep skiing up through March and into April and the thought of baseball and snow together makes me cringe just a little.

Before the spring season hits us however, the winter season is still in full swing. Men’s basketball begins a stretch of five straight road games tomorrow (Saturday) with a trip to Roanoke for a 7:00 pm game. You should make the trip down if you are in the area. Roanoke is always a fun place to play, the crowd is usually pretty rowdy and last season the Generals stole a 68-66 victory from the then- No. 18 Maroons. After the game (or before, your call) I recommend hitting up Mac & Bob’s for a Boston Zone. If the scheduling gods were unkind to the baseball team for making them play in February, then they definitely did the basketball team no favors in making them go down to Methodist next week for a Wednesday night game. Methodist is down in Fayetteville, N.C., and according to Mapquest we can expect to be on the bus for four hours and 44 minutes as we travel 248.87 miles. Actually, I am a little excited/nervous about making the trip to Methodist. I will be making my radio play-by-play debut. I typically go on the air with Jeremy Franklin (the WLUR head honcho) at halftime of our road games, but given the length of the trip, Jeremy did not feel as though he could take a full day off of work, so he asked if I could cover for him. I have always been told that I have a face for radio, so I have that going for me. So, if anybody who happens to read this blog entry happens to tune in to listen the game on Wednesday, bear with me, as I will be flying solo on my maiden voyage. Just call me Lindbergh or Earhart…wait, didn’t Earhart crash?

Ok, so one final thing. Given that we are Sports Information, it is not uncommon for us to receive odd questions about the pool hours or how to get to the dance studio. Well, today someone walked into the office and asked us how long the track around Doremus Gymnasium was. The answer…we did not know. So much for Sports Information, might as well call us Sports Misinformation. With the unanswered question eating at us, we made a quick call to the track office and asked Nate Hoey, the track and field coach if he knew and he in fact did not know it. Our next stop in search of an answer was John Tucker, the men’s cross country coach, but he was not available for comment. Really, Tucker was our last resort as there is probably not a stretch of road or trail in Rockbridge County that he does not know the distance to. So, if anybody happens to know what the distance around the track Doremus is that would be fantastic. Well, really its not a big deal, but I am just curious by nature.


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