By Nick Kieser
Jacob Cole, pitcher for the Volunteer State Community College Pioneers baseball team, committed to furthering his athletic and academic career at Tennessee Tech April 6.
“I’ve had many family members that went to Tennessee Tech. They love it, and I didn’t need to visit their campus to know that’s where I want to be,” said Cole.
“A lot of guys sign late to four year schools. Tennessee Tech is where he’s always wanted to go even back in high school. It’s like his dream school,” said Ryan Hunt, head coach.
This season Cole has pitched a total of 51 innings and has 51 strikeouts as of April 6. His fit into the Tennessee Tech pitching rotation next season perhaps as a starting pitcher is evident.
“I think a strikeout per inning is definitely doing something right,” said Cole.
“If you look at the rankings, they are right there with Vanderbilt, which is pretty prestigious. I have a strong work ethic and a desire to win, in my opinion. I don’t think you find a player who wants to compete more than I do. I hope that Tech is ready,” said Cole.
Cole has been part of a revamp of the Pioneer baseball program, and this team will look to build off his success when he packs his bags to head to Cookeville, Tennessee.
“Jacob has been a big factor in establishing where our program is now and where it’s going to go,” said Hunt.
“He’s been a part of a team that wants to win 30 games this season. He’s an incredibly talented student athlete,” said Jason Barrett, assistant coach.
“He’s really one of the hardest working kids on the team, and he puts in everything he needs to do to get ready for the weekend. I think that he’s going to be an impact player for Tennessee Tech right off the bat,” said Cameron Grogan, Cole’s teammate.
According to Barrett, Cole, is developing a pitch called a cutter to add to his resume.
“It’s a pretty good pitch. He developed pretty quickly. Jacob is going to be successful no matter what he chooses to do. He’s just that type of guy,” said Hunt.
Cole and the Pioneers have 14 games left to play in the regular season.
“I think when you’re not nervous, you can play at your best ability. It’s not about playing the best. It’s about picking up your teammates when they’re down. It’s about being a good guy and teammate. I want to continue to do that,” said Cole.
“He’s a tremendous worker, tremendous young man. He’s everything you want in a player on and off the field,” said Hunt.
“I want to be the guy that was known to work hard in everything he did. Each day I was trying to be a positive influence. It’s been a heck of two years. I’ve really enjoyed it,” said Cole.
Watch Pioneers baseball on Twitter @VSCCPioneersBSB.