Day 4: Road trip
Besides the weekend series the GSU team also plays midweek games This week’s matchup has GSU matching up against University of South Carolina Upstate, located in Spartanburg, S.C., a three-hour drive northeast from Atlanta. The Spartans own a 7-1 record and pitch a 6-10 RHP, who was drafted in 2011, but chose to go to school instead.
The young GSU squad plays sloppy defense and almost beats itself in a 4-1 defeat. As a coach I look at how the GSU staff handles the poor performance. The general question is: When do you get criticize, when do you get really loud? Or should you instead try to focus on the (few) positives? This time the coaching staff is not happy and Coach Frady lets his players have it after the game.
In a college environment a coach most likely has more options (than in other environments) to try to receive t a better effort from a player. Every single guy can be benched because there is always a replacement on the bench looking to contribute and getting playing time. That second string might not be as good as the starter, but the gap in ability is definitey smaller than it is in european teams.
A benching also tells a coach much about the character of a player. How does he handle not playing? Does the pounce or does he fight back right away? Does he shift into a higher gear in practice?