Coach Dave and his players face the challenge of competing on the travel baseball circuit. A surprise new player makes the Scarlet Knights one of the teams to beat across the state. Meanwhile, the players’ dads take on the challenge of guiding their sons and others on the team through Manhood Academy.
As Coach Dave’s various teams progress from recreational baseball to all-stars to middle school and, finally, to high school tryouts, a group of players and their dads come to realize that baseball is less a destination and more a vehicle. I am excited to wrap up the series with Coach Dave Season Five: The Next Level, including a “where are they now” chapter that follows Coach Dave’s players into adulthood, where they reflect on the impact of playing for Coach Dave.[/bluebox]
Book Week: Reflections on Coach Dave Season Four
I loved creating the character of the major league baseball scout of Season Four. It was a chance to work a crusty old baseball lifer into the series. Still mysterious until the end of this book, he offers some balance to many young boys’ dreams of a career in the big leagues. Plus…well, you’d have to read Season Five for that…
Favorite real-life basis
Charlie Jones takes a pathway to manhood that an older man in his former church taught him and passes it along to the players through their dads (and mentors, when a dad is not present). I taught my sons and many a seventh-grade student a similar pathway to manhood. Many years later, a good number of them still remember and still practice the principles.
Also, Coach Dave goes to great lengths to help a Lake City program short on resources. A local coach in my area did something like this for another high school program near us because of his love for the coaching profession and for those coaches giving their best in”perennially rebuilding” situations.
By far, the last line of the book. But I won’t give away the ending by quoting it here. Let’s go with…
“I’ve got your back.” (Bo Nelson)
“You’ve got this, Hunter. I’ve got your back.” (David Wayne Hamilton)
“We’ve all got your back, big fella. Now, let’s go win a championship.” (Bryce Ford)
Sometimes a player needs to face a daunting task on the field because–win or lose–he is preparing to face a more daunting challenge in “real life.”
Parents, give your sons a pathway to manhood. Don’t expect them to “just get it.” Their future wives and future employers will thank you for it.
Always look to pay it forward to teams or programs that need a hand up. Lead your team to pay it forward by working with younger players.
From an Author’s Perspective
Reflections on Coach Dave Season Four: I felt like the game action in the book’s final two games was as compelling as any I have written. The tension of back-to-back high stakes games made for compelling action players, parents, coaches…and writer.
[callout]Click here to read Coach Dave Season Four.
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