KINGSVILLE, Texas — Jason Gonzales has spent his entire baseball collegiate head coaching career at Texas A&M-Kingsville, and it has been a tremendous ride.
He earned his 400th career win this past weekend to go along with several LSC titles and even a trip to the College World Series, but he says while winning is great there is so much more.
"I knew I was supposed to help these guys be much more than just baseball players," said Gonzales. "The good Lord has presented me with a lot of young men, so I started working on making them good people too. When they leave school, I need them to be good fathers because we see a deterioration of our society and in my opinion it's because fathers are not in the homes."
That resonates especially with pitcher Mason Foster, who is already both a husband and a father.
"I needed to grow up a lot when I got here and playing under coach Gonzales, Flores and Middleton,they have impacted my life for the better and helped me mature as a young man, husband and father so I am forever grateful for that."
Up and down the roster, all the players say Gonzales has made a major impact on their personal life.
"He always says you just don't wear the Javelina jersey on the field but you also wear it off the field too," said TAMUK infielder Giancarlo Servin. "He tells us to always represent TAMUK in a respectful manner."
"Coach Gonzales preaches to everyone to go out there and have fun and give it your all," said TAMUK pitcher Kobe Jaramillo. "He is a lot of fun to play for. He always your back and he has so much confidence in us that it's easy to play for a guy like that who believes in you."
The Javelinas are 15-9 (LSC) 17-9 overall. They will open a four game series at Angelo St. starting Friday.