Rasberry to lead ECHS

Published 6:28 am Wednesday, July 25, 2007

By By Matthew Nascone
Jonathan Rasberry has big plans for the Escambia County High School baseball team.
Rasberry, the new head baseball coach for the Blue Devils, said he wants to instill a passion for the game in the Blue Devils players.
"I believe things are looking up here at ECHS," Rasberry said. "I want these guys to have a good work ethic and I want them to respect the game. We will work on making them better and get ready for the season."
Rasberry will expect a lot from his older players and he said good leadership will be needed for the Blue Devils to succeed.
"We will work on the fundamentals of the game and get back to the basics," he said. "We want to also get a team-oriented feel to our game."
Rasberry comes to ECHS from Auburn High School. He was an assistant and Auburn made it to the third round of the playoffs. Before Auburn High he graduated from Auburn University in 2006 with a bachelor's degree in special education.
He played one year for the Tigers in 2006. He played in 20 games and started 14 at catcher.
Rasberry received his associate's degree from Lurleen B. Wallace Community College in 2004 after playing baseball for two years. But he also coached quarterbacks and kickers at nearby Florala High School from 2003-05. He was an assistant baseball coach at Florala in 2005. This will be his first head coaching job.
"I am really excited to get started," Rasberry said. "I will try and teach these guys as much about baseball as I can. But through baseball I will try to help them with their lives because a person can learn many life lessons through the game of baseball."
Rasberry helped LBW win the Alabama Community College Conference Baseball Tournament in 2004 and finish as National Junior College Athletic Association Division II Baseball World Series Runner Up.
ECHS athletic director Kyle Davis said his experience is what drew him to hire Rasberry.
"Jonathan will be a good addition to our baseball and football staff," Davis said. "He has some good ideas that will make our baseball program better."
Davis said he knows there is no way to replace a coach like Keith Nall, but Davis believes Rasberry will do a good job for the Blue Devils.
"You don't replace a Keith Nall, but Jonathan has experience at the Division I level, and that is always a good thing," Davis said.
Parental involvement is also important to the success of the Blue Devil program in Rasberry's mind.
"I really want to get the parents involved because parental involvement is key to our success," he said. "I hope they will want to help with fundraisers and just showing pride in our program. And we will have a Diamond Club this year."
Rasberry said he is excited to work with new assistant baseball coach David Hill this year.
"Coach Hill will be a huge asset to me this year," he said. "I know he will be able to help me with the pitchers and he will do a great job with them."
Rasberry will coach the running backs for the football team.
In the classroom, Rasberry will teach the third and fourth grade special education class at A.C. Moore Elementary School.

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