Coach Ron Polk reflects on baseball career and connections with players at UAB, Mississippi State


Inside the UAB Baseball office. I’m from the old school, I think it’s nice. Is a man who rewrote the college baseball
record books. That’s Polk-Dement Stadium, Dudy-Noble Field. Ron Polk is a legend. He’s the winningest coach ever in the Southeastern
Conference and he led his teams to 8 appearances in the College World Series. Atta boy. Coach Polk didn’t rush into retirement. He’s spent more than a decade at UAB, as a
volunteer assistant coach. Stay inside the ball, stay inside the ball. During his years as a head coach, he was known
for his bouts with the umps. These days he’s loosened up. Yeah. At least around the players. You’re the best. You’re better. Yeah I know that. I love the opportunity to interact with these
kids and I really think that being around college age players, baseball kids, year round
keeps me young. I love you boy. Love you too. You’re gonna be on the microphone here. Love. Haha. Love you too. Coach Polk still has a flip phone, a paper
calendar, and yes even a trusty typewriter. This never has a virus. I don’t have a password. IT never makes a mistake. He also doesn’t “do” social media. I’m big on time management. I get a heck of a lot done. I don’t have interruptions that they all have
and I don’t email, internet, and Twitter, and Facebook and I don’t have that. What he does have is more than 13 thousand
followers on Twitter. From an account run by two of his former players. From what I’m hearing they’re doing a great
job with it. For a man who’s been coaching for nearly three
times as long as some of his players have even been alive, coach Polk finds he can still
relate to the guys in the most old school of ways. You can see here, these are birthday and anniversary
cards about a month in advance. For every player he’s coached, he mails cards
for special occasions. What really makes me feel old is when I’m
wishing a happy 72nd birthday to a player of mine. He estimates he sends more than 5 thousand
a year. It’s the right thing to do. They were a part of my life and I just wanted
to be a part of their life. And it’s those relationships that keep him
going. I really believe that that’s one of our strongest
things we’ve got to be able to do as a coach is not think about Ws and losses, wins and
losses, think about what effect are you having on these boys. Polk is proving that a legendary career means
being a coach for all generations. I think in the back of their minds they say
you know that old guy? He’s done a lot.

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