Alfred State sport management major Megan Gridley recently interviewed senior baseball Jarrod Deaton in her first installment of Q & A with Megan. Deaton and the Pioneers open up the 2020 season this weekend with a road trip to Wesley and Salisbury.
What sports did you play in high school?
The only sport that I played for my high school was baseball. The high school I went to was very large so the ability to play multiple sports was difficult. We had a lot of really good athletes so I stuck to baseball.
Why did you choose Alfred State? What has been your favorite part of your experience here?
When I was searching for colleges in high school, Alfred State never really popped up on my radar. It wasn't until one of my close friends that went here told me about Alfred State. In high school, I wasn't the best student, so my SAT scores were low. The baseball coach became interested in me and the rest was history.
My favorite part of my experience here has been the teams I have been a part of. Some of the most memorable moments of my life have been with the baseball teams.
What was one thing you wanted to accomplish in college sports that you dreamed about in high school?
When I was in high school, the only dream I really had was to continue playing in college. I was always a very average baseball player, so the chance of continuing to play was my dream.
Have you accomplish those dreams (goals)?
It wasn't until my sophomore year that I got the ability to play more. I had to work hard to get myself into the position to play more. But when my opportunities came, I made the most of them and enjoyed my time living out my high school dream.
What is one thing that you love about baseball?
There is so many things that I love about baseball. It's hard to choose one. But if I had to, it would be the mental aspect of the game. Baseball is a very mental game. The things I have learned about the mental aspect of the game have also helped me off the field.
In any time in your sports career, were there any good coaches, or coaches you did not think were beneficial to your success now? What lesson have you learned?
In my baseball career, I have played for some really great coaches, and some not so good ones. I think that every athlete has come across coaches that are not beneficial. My travel ball coach that I played for was probably the most beneficial to my success. He taught me as much as there was to know about the game and how to be a leader. The lessons I have learned are definitely the ones about being a leader and a good teammate. Those two lessons have helped me both on and off the field.
Do you feel that playing sports is difficult to balance with school?
Absolutely. When I got to Alfred as a freshman, I really struggled to find the balance. It was bad to the point I was almost ineligible to play. I have learned how to balance it better and have done well since my first season.
Do you have a pregame routine or superstition? (If you want to share)
I have many actually. I have a poker chip tied to a red shoestring, a 4 leaf clover key chain, a pin of the Delta logo, and my dad's military pins all on my bag that I have had since my freshman year. I also have my father's dog tags that I wear every game, and a little yellow ninja that stays in my left pocket. I also have to wear shorts under my baseball pants. In high school, I carried exactly 67 cents in the left pocket of the shorts. I drink a Red Bull before every game. And my final superstition is that I always put on my left cleat untied first, then my right one untied. Then I tie the left one, then the right one.
If you could do it all over again, would you? Is there anything you would have done differently?
That's a tough question. I think that I would go back and do it all again, but there are some small things about my playing career that I would change. I probably would have done a little more to help myself out my freshman year, but other than that, I wouldn't change anything.
Favorite Number: 4
Favorite Athlete: Bo Jackson
Favorite Place to Eat on Campus: The Terrace