Tradition

Reprinted from Acceptance Speech for Coach Fishbaugh's introduction to the Baseball Hall of Fame

On behalf of my family, the entire Grand Slam USA staff and the many hundred of players and students my father influenced over his many years of coaching, I would like to thank you for your patronage. With all the current talk about character education, the need for developing kids with integrity and discipline, kids that have a sense of commitment to something greater than themselves, we need look no further than the opportunities that exist within athletics. My dad tried to instill a winning spirit in his players that demanded hard work and dedication to the game and to the other participants; fellow players, opponents, officials and coaches.

His was not a win at all cost attitude. His was a win with integrity, hardwork, sportsmanship, and honor type philosophy. I can't tell you the countless number of player who have said to me over the years, "Your dad is the only reason I made it through college. I knew if I wanted to play, I had to carry my weight, turn in my papers and fulfill my commitments. He made me want to do it because I never wanted to disappoint him."

Players who have great coaches as lifetime examples, end up becoming persons with character, integrity and values. Part of my fathers' legacy are the people who learned to love and respect the game of baseball. They have become the next generation of quality coaches, teachers and most importantly quality people.

By honoring my father today, you honor not only him but all of the coaches everywhere who believe that having a winning program is much, much more than simply winning ballgames. He believed that having a winning program means producing individuals that can meet the challenges of life with character, integrity, and an attitude of selflessness. Thank you for finding these attributes worth honoring.

Sincerely,
The Fishbaugh Family