A behind-the-scenes look at the University of Tampa baseball

Urso

Joe Urso

A former Spartan All-American himself, Joe Urso is set to begin his 16th season as the head coach at the University of Tampa. In addition to defending their 2015 national title, UT’s all-time winningest coach looks to add to a lengthy list of accolades in 2016, which include 10 Sunshine State Conference titles, 10 NCAA South Regional championships and four national championships (2006, 2007, 2013, 2015):

IP: When did you know that you wanted to coach for a living? How did you get your start?

Joe Urso: “I knew once I was in the minor leagues that once my playing days were over, I wanted to get into coaching. The Angels gave me a shot, I was able to coach with them for four years and when the job opened up, I knew it was a perfect fit. We were about to have our first child, so I was able to come back home to an amazing job. It was always a dream of mine to come back and take over.” Continue reading

Brian Doyle: an extended baseball family

Interview by Keith Madison

Brian Doyle has had an impactful and influential baseball career. He is best known for leading the Yankees with a .438 batting average in the 1978 World Series. His older brother Denny played in the Major Leagues with the Phillies, Angels and Red Sox. His twin brother Blake is currently the major league hitting coach with the Colorado Rockies. The three of them together were innovators in starting the Doyle Baseball School in 1978. The school has trained over 500,000 players and 300,000 coaches to date. The Doyle brothers were also pioneers in showcases (Doyle Bonanza) and coaches certification. Having competed against Brian in little league, high school and in the minor leagues, I thought it would be fun to talk baseball with him once again.

In an era prior to camps, showcases and travel ball, how did a young Brian Doyle develop his passion and skill for baseball?

Our father, Robert, was a very good amateur basketball and baseball player. He spent a lot of time in the backyard throwing, playing pepper and catching ground balls to us. When Blake, my identical twin, and I were in the 7th grade, Denny, my older brother, was in the Major Leagues with the Phillies. In a small, rural Kentucky town there was only one thing that occupied our time and that was sports. We played all sports, but baseball was the game that seemed to come naturally.

doyleYou come from a well known “baseball family.” How did your father and brothers impact your passion for the game and help you develop your skills?

Having a big brother eleven years older was a huge factor. Denny would come home from pro-ball to teach Dad and us. Dad would quickly make coaching adjustments. He was a good coach who knew “the only way to get better is to get smarter.” I was impacted at a very young age with that principle. So my skill level got better each year. The passion for the game comes from the desire to become better. Continue reading