Jerry Rashid is an Illinois high school coaching legend, having coached 39 years, racking up over 800 wins, winning a state championship, and producing many college and professional players. He had top notch facilities at the schools where he’s coached. He ran a local clinic each year that drew hundreds. You’d think that would be enough. Turns out, Coach Rashid had a new chapter — and a new opportunity — waiting for him.
Just down the road from where Coach Rashid lives in Peoria is a small D3 school in the tiny central Illinois town of Eureka. Eureka College is most famous for being the college home of Ronald Reagan. Their men’s basketball team has sampled glory in the past and the football team is gaining regional and national attention the last few years. The baseball team is another story altogether. There is no long and storied tradition and the facilities are less than what Coach Rashid had to work with in his high school days. But challenges are right up Jerry’s alley.
In this episode, Coach Rashid talks about how he came to make this move, the facilities challenges (starting with a field that had “potential”), recruiting, finding players who like the niche that Eureka occupies, dealing with the harsh Central Illinois (so-called) “springs”, his staff, recruiting and maintaining staff, his family, selling a vision, calling in old favors, getting local business to help, and his vision for the future.
Photo credit: Cornbelt Sports
Intro Music: Matt’s Blues, Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License