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“Hiring Local”

19 May 2017 Views From The Booth Sports

Greetings from The Booth!

So far, so good for the number 10 ranked Shenandoah University Baseball team, with an opening win in the NCAA baseball tournament at the York (Pa) Regional.  Last night’s (as of this writing) win was the 9th opening Regional win in as many tries for the Hornets, so there will be no “Two and BBQ” as the saying goes! Should the Hornets make it out of the Regional, it’ll be another trip to the D-3 World Series in Appleton, Wisconsin. Good luck this weekend, guys!

Since declaring the Nationals “2017 NL East Champs” on my morning radio show this week, the Nats are 0-2. That’ll teach me to be positive…

And on the sports docket this weekend, The Preakness, the NASCAR All-Star Race, and can we just go ahead and fast-forward to the NBA Finals, please? We all know who’s going to be there…

Now, for today’s topic, we stay on-campus. The Shenandoah University athletic braintrust this week announced the hiring of their new Head Men’s Basketball Coach after an extensive national search.  It appears to be a great hire on a number of levels as Adam Walsh comes home.

The Winchester, Va. native was a graduate of James Wood HS, and was most recently the head coach at Division-3 Centenary College of Louisiana, where he was the Head “Gent” since 2010. His accolades include  2014 SCAC Coach of the Year honors.

You can get all the above from a press release, but my take is that as the Hornets get ready to move into their new showplace, the recently-named James R. Wilkins Events Center, it was important to tie the University and the community together, and AD Doug Zipp and the collective selection committee did that with the hiring of Walsh.

Communities and institutions of higher learning don’t always mesh.  I attended small Alderson-Broaddus College (now University) in Philippi, WVa.  I never had the feeling that there was a warm relationship between the school and the town. The geography alone (AB is high on a hill overlooking the town) lends itself to “you’re better than we are” feelings.  SU, meanwhile has bonded with it’s surrounding area, and has grown exponentially, with a “globally and locally” approach.

Here’s what Walsh says about returning to the area: “I want to make sure that Hornets Basketball is also Winchester/Frederick County’s team. I want our program to be connected to the campus and the community in new ways and I hope to positively impact the youth of Winchester and Frederick County.”

That can only be a good thing, and as more local athletes want to stay home and play for Shenandoah University, that community connection will be even stronger. Not to mention, the added benefit of “more fannies in the seats” of The Wilk (I just made that name up on the fly).

As Walsh this week remembered fondly his days of watching the Phil Dixon years at Shingleton Gym , I can’t help but remember and miss the late Hornets basketball coach and AD Dave Dutton.  Dave brought a D-I mentality to SU at a time when the Hornets needed it, and I know he would love the things going on now at the school.

With his understanding of a D-3 dynamic, Adam Walsh is what Shenandoah needs now.

That’s it from the Booth. Until next time, GO HORNETS!