Coach Doug Schreiber Goes Out a Winner
Years from now when the history of Purdue baseball is gone over they will notice the spike near the turn of the 21st century in what Purdue baseball was able to achieve. That was the period that Doug Schreiber was at the helm of the Purdue Boilermakers. As I said in my post a couple of days ago I may be biased. Doug is from my hometown, and the Schreiber name is one that is synonymous with baseball for me. He was a guy that was able to get the most out of his players. Here in the midwest baseball is not an easy sport to recruit. You don’t get to play at home as much as the southern teams do, and when you do it is usually not the best weather. The northern teams are at a disadvantage. What Doug did though was find gamers that would play the game no matter where it was played. I don’t know that there was a dry eye in the house as the current crop of Boilermakers each took turns giving their coach a hug. When Coach Schreiber saw some of the former players that made it back on short notice the electric nature of the moment seemed to ramp up a bit. This was the most emotional baseball game that I have ever photographed, and I only photographed the events leading up to the game. At some point something at the stadium that he helped build will have his name on it. The stadium is currently named after the man that Coach Schreiber passed for the all time win mark four years ago. I can’t wait to have coach back when that is unveiled.
Seniors to Remember
If you follow me on social media, or read this blog at all then you know that this senior class was special to me. In 2013 I found myself with a pass to photograph Purdue baseball. Members of this class helped me build my portfolio as they performed on the field. Many of my first successful baseball photos had a member of this class in them. It was a pleasure photographing them, and I wish them the best in whatever they do after Purdue. Jack Picchiotti seemed to be a lightning bolt for good photos his freshman year. I made my first front page of PurdueSports.com with a picture of Jack. Photos of him are still in my portfolio to this day. I loved watching a bomb off the bat of Kyle Wood. Man he could crush the ball. I was not at the game today, but I enjoyed watching the video of his senior home run. Cody Strong was the player that would always seem to be dirty. As a photographer you like that because that means they are doing some interesting things. Cody was always doing something photo worthy during a game. Kyle Johnson could cover some ground. I said that the first time I saw him in the outfield for Purdue. His long strides made getting to a ball seem easy. I never saw DiMaggio play, but they always talked about the graceful way that he caught a ball. Kyle has to be close to that. Gavin Downs had a motion that gave me fits the first time I saw him pitch. I had two ways that I knew to photograph a pitcher. Gavin helped me realize that I need to study the pitcher first to see what the best way to photograph them is. Yesterday’s starter Mike Lutz had a similar effect on me. Shane Bryant helped us photograph a feature for the Purdue Alumnus magazine this past winter. He was amazing with his time, and that helped make the shoot go very easy. At some point I have a story featuring each player that walked onto the field for the last time as a player yesterday. I basically learned to shoot baseball as they were learning to play college baseball. On a selfish note it was a bittersweet day. I want to see these players keep playing. What you realize quickly covering college sports though is that the players are now on to bigger and better things. It could be continuing to play baseball or moving on in whatever they have picked after college. Each one is on to bigger and better things. It was fun photographing them for four years though.
Photos of the Week
I was going to put a large gallery on the blog here, but I decided that they looked better on Exposure so I put them in the photos of the week. You can find that page here. This is a fun way to see some of my favorite work from the past week. This week I had three shoots that are private, and won’t be in the photos of the week. Even without those three I am still happy with my take. Next week will have a lot of baseball in it. I will be shooting 15 games over the course of four days for the MVC Conference Tournament. I have no idea what will happen over that four days, but I am sure the emotions will be running high. It should be a good week to shoot.