1-11-2012 January 11 Update



More extensive and complicated than anticipated, but, finally drove a car yesterday.  Back to hospital tomorrow for post-exam; if doctor clears me, I will cover the weekend tournament at Buena Vista.  Thanks to Allison, I received good care in the hospital and at home; daughter Kathryn took me grocery shopping.  Emma and Zachary provided the entertainment.



The complete schedule for the tournament this coming weekend is now on the Team NJ web site.  Games begin at 8am Friday; the last game begins at 2pm Sunday.  Games concentrated at Walt Disney Wide World of Sports.  Four games Saturday are at the Bear Creek Complex – and match some very good teams.


Brown resigns as head coach of Chicago Bandits


Photo by Dina Kwit

ROSEMONT, Ill. – The Chicago Bandits annouced today that Darrick Brown has resigned as head coach of the Chicago Bandits.

“We want to thank Darrick for the wonderful year of service he provided to the Bandits,” said Bandits GM, Aaron M. Moore. “He was a big reason for the team’s success in 2011, including winning the team’s second NPF Championship.

“We respect his decision to focus on what he has going on in Michigan with his family and indoor center, Brown’s Fastpitch, and the Bandits organization wishes him nothing but success moving forward.”
During the 2011 season, Brown coached the Bandits to a 20-20 regular season record. In Sulphur, La. for the 2011 NPF Championship series, the Bandits defeated the Akron Racers in the first round, advancing to the finals where they eventually defeated the USSSA Pride for the title of 2011 NPF Champions.
“I intend to spend more time with my family, building and maintaining my softball training business and focusing on working toward a collegiate coaching position,” said Brown. “I appreciate the opportunity I was given to lead the Bandits in 2011. I learned a great deal about the organization and the NPF and think the future is bright for professional fastpitch softball.”
Originally from Kalamazoo, Mich., Brown began his coaching career at 19, becoming one of the top hitting and pitching instructors in the country. Prior to joining the Bandits, he spent time as a coach for Glen Oaks Community College and Kalamazoo Valley Community College where his teams averaged over 30 wins a season.
In addition, Darrick has developed the Brown’s Fastpitch travel softball program, which now has travel teams ranging from 10U to 18U.


NPF Announces New Youth Program With Three Different Ways To Get Involved

Nashville, TN – National Pro Fastpitch announced today the establishment of the NPF Official Developmental Partnership Program. The Program is designed to join the professional ranks of owners, players, and staff with the amateur ranks of youth participants, their coaches and parents.

 The NPF Official Developmental Partnership Program is broken into three distinct groups: Park Partner, Performance Partner, and Playing Partner. ODP’s are linked with NPF through a benefits and privileges package that includes preferential camp and clinic booking, preferential guest speaker scheduling, discounted tickets to NPF games and special events, opportunity to become an Official Retailer of NPF gear, equipment and apparel discounts, and more.

 The Park Partnership enables a recreation, city, or privately owned park to enroll all of its membership teams in the program for the price of one ODP fee. Performance Partnership enables training schools, clubs, and groups along with private coaches, teachers, and organizations to enroll all students for the price of a single ODP fee. And the Playing Partnership is designed to allow teams and leagues that may not fall under a single park or facility to enroll team or league members into the ODP program for the one simple fee. The cost for becoming an Official Developmental Partner of the NPF is $250 annually per park, facility, etc.

 “We constantly try to find ways to link the accomplished and impressive women athletes of the NPF with the impressionable young players that dream of being in their shoes one day,” commented NPF Commissioner, Cheri Kempf. “This program will broaden the awareness of the League by exposing tomorrow’s players to today’s athletes.”

 Participants can become an NPF Official Developmental Partner by going to the NPF website at www.profastpitch.com, clicking on the “Youth Programs” tab, and filling out the information. More information is also available on the website. To view the Commissioner’s introduction of the Official Developmental Program, go to http://www.youtube.com/nationalprofastpitch.

Former Big 12 pitcher, Denny-White, signs with Bandits in 2012


Denny-White makes it official as she signs her contract for the 2012 season.

ROSEMONT, Ill. – Chicago Bandits GM Aaron M. Moore announced the signing of pitcher Meagan Denny-White for the 2012 season.“I’m excited to be a part of paving the way for young softball players who dream of playing professionally someday,” said Denny-White. “I will give everything I have to this wonderful organization.”

A right-handed pitcher out of the University of Texas, Denny-White was a three-time Big 12 Pitcher of the Week throughout her career. Named to the 2007 All-Big 12 Conference Second Team, she is ranked second all-time at Texas with 69 career wins and second in career strikeouts (699) behind USSSA Pride pitcher Cat Osterman.


National Pro Fastpitch Announces Partnership with Shoulder Shield 

NASHVILLE –National Pro Fastpitch has announced a new partnership with Shoulder Shield, LLC. Shoulder Shield, based in Sherman, MS, is an innovative designed product that promotes health in the user’s shoulder and elbow joints.   “It’s always exciting to launch a new partnership, but particularly special to launch with a company that will help improve the health and wellness of our athletes,” stated Commissioner Kempf.

 NPF and Shoulder Shield will be hosting a Series on NPF’s “Throwin’ Down with the NPF”, set to launch in 2012.  “Throwin’ Down with the NPF” is a weekly broadcast hosted on NPF’s website that feature NPF players.  Shoulder Shield and NPF will partner together for a Series of five episodes that will air five consecutive weeks in June.  The Series will feature NPF Players talking about the importance of taking preventative measures to stay healthy on and off the field. 


Zephyrs Gold – 2012 Catcher – Lauren Hamilton – South Dakota State University


NFCA Announces 2011 NFCC Four-Star Master Coach Recipients
January 9, 2012

 STARKVILLE, Miss. – Fourteen coaches were honored at the 2011 Convention In Las Vegas for having achieved the prestigious rank of Four-Star Master Coach, an honor bestowed to those that have completed all eight National Fastpitch Coaches Colleges courses.

 These fourteen join 82 other coaches who have also reached the milestone since the program began in 2002.  The first class of Four-Star Master Coaches was recognized at the 2005 Convention and included 22 members.

 Since it’s founding in 2002, the NFCC has been one of the cornerstones of the NFCA’s pledge to help continually educate softball coaches of all levels.  Along with earning the title of Four-Star Master Coach, completion of the eight-course curriculum can also count towards a master’s degree in coaching from Texas Woman’s University.

Having now completed all eight courses, this year’s crop of graduates was not shy in telling how the NFCC curriculum has made them a better coach.

“Perhaps the greatest benefit for me, has been the confidence to push the envelope (suicide squeeze, angle down, secondary first and thirds) in game situations,” said Cheqamegon High School (Wis.) head coach Ken Dischler.  “The on-the-field sessions with college players have been especially beneficial in this regard — seeing how many times these techniques are successful, often when the defense knows what is about to happen.”

 San Diego State assistant coach Stacy Nuveman-Deniz agrees that one of the best ways to expand your coaching repertoire is to attend NFCC courses.

“I have a whole new arsenal of drills and motivational tools to help my team now and in the future.  Probably the best part of the NFCC program is the ability to interact with the best and most accomplished coaches in the game and to share ideas with fellow students.”

 Madge Makowske, head coach at St. Catherine (Minn.), agrees with Nuveman that NFCC courses are an excellent way to expand your knowledge base.

“I thought it would be great to continue to add knowledge to the coaching toolbox and to hear from highly successful college coaches. I was able to challenge my philosophy and implement new ideas.”

One of the biggest assets of NFCC courses is the ability to interact with the instructors, who are some the brightest minds in the world of softball.  Leslie Huntington, head coach of the 2008 Division II National Champions, Wisconsin-Eau Claire, says that the interaction is one of the best parts of the courses.

 “I felt the courses provided a unique opportunity for the participants to share and engage in open conversation with the instructors and other participants, rather than just being “talked to” by the instructors.”

While the NFCC courses can teach you what to do on the field, they can also provide help in off-field situations.

 “I coach travel ball and they helped me grow in every aspect of the game of softball, “ said Bill Beckham of Wizard of Magic.  “From how to evaluate the fields before the game even starts, through specific offensive and defensive skills, all the way to how to react when we won the USSSA national championship.”

 While each course is geared towards a specific topic, the classes themselves can be fluid based on the needs of those attending.

“The coaching courses are very versatile in that they allow the class to move into whatever topic the coaches really want to dive into,” said Yasmin Mossadeghi, head coach at Southwestern (Calif.).  “If there are topics that the class really wants to talk about then more time is spent on those topics.”

 Mike Delaney, head coach at Village Christian HS (Calif.), says that not only are NFCC courses a useful tool, but one of the best values on the market for coaches.

“As a coach, you are always looking for a way to get better, the NFCC program was the best use of resources that I have spent. Each course makes you re-think the way you run practices, teach and communicate with your team.  To learn from some of the best minds in the game was truly a blessing for me.”

 This year’s slate of NFCC courses will wrap-up at the Women’s College World Series in Oklahoma City with Course 408: World Series Coaching & Game Observation on May 31 – June 2.  John Tschida and NFCA Hall of Famers Gayle Blevins and Dianne Baker will lead participants in breaking down the on-field action and talking with WCWS participant coaches after their games.


NFCC Four-Star Master Coaches – Class of 2011


Bill Beckham – Wizards of Fastpitch

Lindsay Bramhall – Thomas More

Mike Delaney – Village Christian HS (CA)

Ken Dischler – Chequamegon HS (WI)

Blythe Golden – Gulf Coast State

Leslie Huntington – Wisconsin-Eau Claire

Greg Lamanna – Seton Hall

Madge Makowske – St. Catherine (MN)

John Maloney – Long Island Anthem

Yasmin Mossadeghi – Southwestern (CA)

Stacey Nuveman – San Diego State

Joanna Payette – Stetson

Sherry Tetreault – Eisenhower HS (OK)

Steve Tetreault 


To always have the remote handy so that at no time in 2012 do I have to listen to any of the Palins, or Bachman, or Kanye West.  I’ve even turned down the volume when President Obama speaks.  Was anyone seriously waiting with baited breath for Todd Palin’s endorsement?  Turned off Bama/LSU after one quarter; Oklahoma State could have beaten either of them.





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