DES MOINES, Iowa — Lou Yacinich has spent the last 48 years dedicated to coaching up good ballplayers. But more importantly, he's been dedicated to coaching them into better men.
"I hope that I helped raise these young people the way their parents would want them to be and then how baseball has expected of them as well."
Over the course of his career, he's totaled over 1,200 victories, making him the third-winningest active coach in the NAIA.
Athletic director Troy Plummer believes that success is a result of his ability to instill confidence in his players and get them to buy in.
"When 40 says you'll be great at something, you internally believe that you're gonna be great at something," he said. "That's how he's got such effort out of his kids throughout the years."
The trust and respect players have for Yacinich isn't lost on him.
So as a way of saying thank you, he coached third base Wednesday night, something he hasn't done in a while.
"It was something I wanted to do to honor the young men that come and play for me," Yacinich said. "It was neat. It was fun."
At the end of the day, Yacinich just wants to leave the game better than he found it.
"It's not just in runs scored, whether you win or whether you lose. You're a winner when you're around such fine young people and their families."