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Softball Coaching Bible


Cathi Aradi

Fastpitch Coach: Q&A

Connie Clark, Head Softball Coach, University of Texas.

Overall won-lost record at present position: 45-17

Previous Softball Head or assistant softball coaching positions: Assistant coach, Florida State, five years.

Other accomplishments: Won national championship in 1986 as a player at Cal State Fullerton. Assistant coach three years at Women's College World Series, head coach one year at WCWS (Texas, 1998).

Undergraduate Alma Mater and year graduated: Cal State Fullerton, 1987.

Postgraduate Alma Mater: Florida State University, 1994.

Softball playing career highlights: Three-time national champions, Broderick Award winner, 1987.

Q: When did you know you wanted to coach fastpitch softball and how did you get started?

CC: I knew once I began working clinics at CSUF. JoAnne Graf called me and I was lucky enough to be offered the FSU job at a young age.

Q: Who are some of the coaches and non-coaches you learned the most from and what did you learn?

CC: My pitching coach, Dave Smith, taught me to be more assertive and a little mean. My parents taught me persistence.

Q: What do you think you do best as a coach?

CC: I am organized, which allows for more production in several areas. I respect opinions and input from my staff and players.

Q: What would you change, if anything, about the recruiting process?

CC: Recruits should trade places with college coaches so they might understand our decisions.

Q: If there is one rule or procedure change you would like to see your national governing body adopt, what would it be?

CC: That we (NCAA) could oversee the olympic process instead of ASA.

Q: When recruiting, what's the first thing you look for in a player? What's the second thing?

CC: First, does she fit our specific needs for position, student and type of personality? Second, athleticism, arm strength and foot speed.

Q: What makes for a successful season?

CC: Fulfilling potential of your specific group for that given year.

Q: What do you think was the best coaching job you ever did?

CC: Splitting pitchers in a championship game, which allowed us to win the title.

Q: What was your greatest moment as a coach?

CC: Each time I see someone "get it" or execute something you just taught them.

Q: What was your worst moment as a coach?

CC: Not fulfilling potential in a team that should have gone farther.

Q: What is funniest/strangest/most memorable experience you and your team have had on the road?

CC: We have had several, but probably the time I didn't get my suitcase and the team put together a very funny care package and brought it to my hotel room. We laughed at the clothes they had me put on and we stayed up a while and told jokes and laughed.

Q: What do you love most about coaching?

CC: The rapport you build with the team and individuals. Seeing athletes "grow up" during their college career.

Q: What do you love least about coaching?

CC: Very time-consuming. I am married to my job.

Q: Please complete this sentence: My coaching career has been successful if the majority of my players_____________.

CC: Fulfill their potential as athletes and as people.

Q: Who was the best player (position or pitcher) you’ve ever coached against?

CC: Jennifer Lizama, Nebraska, second base. She competes every single pitch, intense.

Q: Which is the best team you’ve ever coached against ?

CC: Arizona in 1995. They were tough to pitch to.

Q: If you could go anywhere in the world for a week, all expenses paid, where would you go?

CC: Somewhere with a beach or water.

Q: What haven't you done yet in your life that you still want to do?

CC: Win a national championship as a coach. Do something completely out of the coaching arena.

Q: What advice would you give to young people who want to coach softball?

CC: Be a graduate assistant, student assistant or a volunteer to get a true feel for it all.

Q: If you weren't coaching softball, what would you be doing?

CC: Advertising, interior design.

Q: What is your favorite movie?

CC: Against All Odds, Patch Adams.

Q: What is your favorite music?

CC: Old rock and roll, most of it.

Q: What is your favorite food?

CC: Italian.