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"From Sports Illustrated, May 14, 1984.


Jack Smitheran, the baseball coach at Cal-Riverside, was thrown out of a recent game with Oral Roberts while he was going to the bathroom.

The home-plate umpire, unhappy about a couple of hit batsmen, warned both benches that the next such incident would result in the offending team's pitcher and coach being ejected. In the eighth inning, while Smitheran was in the dugout bathroom, out of sight and sound of the field, his pitcher, Walt Stull, hit a Titan batter, precipitating a bench-clearing brawl. "I didn't know how the fight started," Smitheran said later. "All of a sudden I heard some footsteps. I looked out, and there was nobody left in the dugout." Persuasive though this alibi was, the ump carried out his threat and gave Smitheran and Stull the heave-ho. Cal-Riverside won the game 11-4."

Although the guestbook will no longer be updated, previously posted articles will remain open as they continue to carry the spirit of UCR baseball. We invite both new and veteran visitors to continue experiencing history via the spirit and athleticism of fifty years of UCR baseball.

Remembering the First Team

Name: Bill Leet (former player) Sent: May 2nd 2008
I played on the '58 team with movie host Dick Small. I had no clue that it was the first team in the history of UCR baseball. Dick is right. We didn't play in front of huge crouds.

Thanks From Coach Smitheran

Name: Jack Smitheran (Former Head Coach, American Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame Member) Sent: May 1st 2008
I want to thank UC Riverside and all those who played for me for all the wonderful memories over the 31 years I coached baseball at UCR. You will never know how much I appreciate the opportunity to be a part of the university community and to be with so many assistant coaches and players who gave so much to the program. While I had only two full time assistants [Pentland and Smith] there where many who where paid very little or nothing who gave themselves and their time to contribute to our success. Thank you so much.

To all the players I want you to know how much I appreciate your dedication, hard work and sacrific you gave to the program. Without you there is no UCR baseball tradition. I made many mistakes over my tenure at UCR and I regret every one of them but I hope my good decisions will out weigh the bad ones. If anything, I hoped you learned never to quit, respect and honor that which is dear to you, and that life is like an 0-3 day that a flair won't correct!

So many memories, so many great memories. Thanks guys. Love each and every one of you. Coach

P.S. If you are not there on the 24th I will meet you at 7 a.m. down the right field line.

The Family

Name: Eric Smyers (former player) Sent: May 1st 2008
When I first came to UCR, I had no idea of the what to expect about the program nor it's history. I was welcomed aboard and found how tight-knit the club was. Being part of this team was like having brothers with you all the time, we were our own fraternity in our own way. There were so many great memories, it's hard to pick one, but I bet most can relate to this daily one of getting out to the batting cages at noon, "ro-shammin" for who's first (you know, world problems can be solved with "ro-sham-bo"), taking your cuts until you couldn't swing anymore, shaggin' in the outfield or groundballs until your turn again. Then come 3 o'clock, the real practice began with "fundies". At the end of the intersquad game and the 6 hour practice, many would go sit down in 1st base dugout dead exhausted, and think about how great it is to do this day after day.

To Coaches Smitheran and Smith, Hobbs, Kich, G, Nebbets, Bones, Doyle, Lavs, and all the rest, thanks for the great times! It was a blast!

The Good Old Days

Name: Gabe Barker (former player) Sent: April 23rd 2008
The memories that come to mind:

  • Watching FRIDAY on the bus and Smitheran being ok with it???
  • Asking Winterstrom what the pitch sequence was and him answering "I don't know, I saw a potato and mashed it."
  • Mike "Mr. Furley" Eason and 277 E Blaine
  • Domi's famous jumping jacks
  • Rob Roland and the Turkey
  • Mahoney's ability to square up on a baseball in BP!
  • Doc diving for a fly ball on the warning track in BP before a game and seeing Smitheran go nuts. Doc led the world in saves that year.
  • Carrying Woots on my back in every class we took together (I still carry him)
  • The smell of Perkins' bare feet
  • Playing 3rd and seeing Doyle smoke a line drive off Smitheran's leg and seeing Smitheran pop right up clapping as if he enjoyed it. Tough not to laugh at that one.
  • McDermott turning GREEN
  • Tav's Thumbs

Being a member of the UCR Baseball family is an honor. Playing for Coach Smitheran and Coach Smith prepared me for life's challenges and I am thankful for that.

Making the Right Decision at the Time

Name: Steve Glaum (former player) Sent: April 23rd 2008
The decision I made in 1976 was the best decision a person could hope for. I was drafted by San Diego and not knowing what to do. I called my parents and asked them what should I do? They said, it was my decision. No help. I called Coach Smitheran and he said he could not tell me what I should do. He said he was happy for me but declined to tell me what to do. No help from my peers. Well, I looked at the team we had coming back, and said to myself, do I want to play pro ball or come back and be with all the baseball buddies I got to know, and the coaches who taught me the things just to be recognized by the pro teams out there? After some long dicussions with myself, I decided to go back to Riverside to be with a team that could possibly go a long way, and I wanted to be a part of that. I really wanted to learn from Coach Smitheran, Coach Pentland, and of course Coach Smith the finer points of the game. The rest is history because we did win, winning the first College World Series in the school's history. To be a part of the First National Championship Team in the school's history is by far the greatest memory I have. Friends from that team will live with me forever, especially Ron Fodrey, my roommate who had the best curveball I have ever seen. UCR baseball will forever be a part of my long-lasting memories. Thank you UCR and especially Coach Smitheran for believing in me.

One of Many Great Memories (Part 2)

Name: Andy Owen (former player) Sent: April 22nd 2008
It was a Saturday practice during fall ball my freshman year. It was unseasonably hot and practice was dragging on. We were slogging into hour 4 in the batting cage when Coach Smitheran launched into a dissertation on hitting. Well, everyone was beat, it was hot, and we were all sitting down and inevitably, Jim Doyle fell asleep.

Right in the middle of extolling the virtues of keeping a flat bat through the zone, Coach caught Doyle out of the corner of his eye and screamed, "Doyle!...somebody wake up Doyle!!" and ripped into him good. But what was even more brilliant was Chad Townsend was sitting right next to Doyle and he was asleep too, but he had on his Oakleys so Coach couldn't tell.

We all had to run because of Doyle falling asleep and the older guys didn't take too kindly to that...but it was worth it.

Great Memories

Name: Jeremey Wooten (former player) Sent: April 22nd 2008
I feel very fortunate to have played at UCR for Coach Smitheran and Coach Smith. They both prepared me for life and a career in coaching. My teammates made UCR Baseball the best 4 years. Some of the momements that stand out in my mind:

  • Grabbing a fence!
  • The Milk Toast speech
  • Perkins taking ground balls in a wife beater the very first day of Baseball class
  • Tava trying to slap a flyball away from the first baseman
  • Crazy Louie
  • Ben putting the tarp on the field in his sliders
  • Madril stealing all of my jokes
  • Clark, soon to be All-American getting ripped by Smitheran
  • Learning how to put on a uniform and how the zipper has a locking mechanism
  • My very first at bat in the alumni game: got a hit, stole second, but was tagged out by the shortstop who told me it was a foul ball when it wasn't. Can't believe I fell for the foul ball trick. The whole stadium was laughing at me
Very proud to be a Highlander, the Alumni weekend is the best weekend of the year!

From Perkins

Name: Kevin (former player) Sent: April 21st 2008
Oh how the years have passed. Top memories I have:

  • Papi Doyle and Moran teaching Stevens and myself the game of spades.(Then cheating everytime we played.)
  • Winterstrom swinging at a pitch and getting hit in the chest.
  • Having someone throw a bag of flour through our front door and turning our living room into a cloud of white haze.
  • Watching benches clear in a fight against SB from my back while Smitheran sat on top of me.
  • Woots abnormal bicep muscle. Never had I seen something so disturbing in my life.
  • Team SOBUC
  • Lombardi teaching us the language: "Stevens is still Crute and I am Gengy"
  • I thank Coaches Smitheran and Smith for giving a kid like me a chance to play. I will never forget all the life experiences they provided as well as all the guys I became friends with. Thank you for the great years.

So many memories...How do you pick one?

Name: Steve Madril (former player) Sent: April 9th 2008
Top stories I can think off at the top of my head:

  • Salazar and Emo and the hamburger on the stool.
  • Prop comic Greg Mosby and the UCR bus going to his parents house in Phoenix.
  • Tava getting drilled in the dome by a fastball and Coach Smith wanting to go off on the pitcher.
  • Smitheran blowing his arm out throwing BP at USD.
  • Lombardi running around the field in his sliders with the Highlander mascot head on.
  • My Hero.
  • Laughing hysterically with Wooten all the way home from Cabazon.
  • Playing spades in the Commons.
  • Smitheran going off on Clark at practice for laughing at John Wooten. "Clark, go get my fungo."
My years at UCR were the best years of my life. I will forever have respect for Coaches Smitheran and Smith for all that they have done for me. Whenever the program needs my help or support, I will be there.

One of Many Great Memories

Name: Andy Owen (former player) Sent: April 4th 2008
One of my favorite memories was my freshman year during a game at Dominguez Hills. Rex McMackin was a senior at the time and he was a really good hitter. However, in his 2d at bat with a runner on second, he punched out looking. He stood in the batter's box for a moment, turned to the ump, and said, "Look...if I don't swing, it's not a strike." Everyone in the park heard it. Incredibly, he didn't get tossed. I thought for sure, however, that Coach Smitheran would lay into him; but he didn't. No one said anything to him. It was at that time that I thought Rex was one of the coolest dudes I ever met.

Boys of Summer

Name: Paul Barrington (former player) Sent: April 3rd 2008
I had the privilege of playing for Dr.Don Edwards in 1965-66.Later in life the privilege to coach Steve Glaum (1977 player) in high school. The lessons learned from Coach Edwards have served me well in my career. Baseball is the only sport that mirrors life. The opportunity to experience ups and downs and still succeed. I would not trade my baseball years at UCR for anything. Go Highlanders.

Sweet Memory

Name: Tony Richards (former player) Sent: April 2nd 2008
Every time I chew a piece of bubble gum I think of Jack Carroll.

UCR Baseball

Name: Keith Bailey (former player) Sent: April 2nd 2008
UCR Baseball has come a long way. In the seventies we didn't have the success the program enjoys today. But, we had a lot of fun. Oh, and the UCR Invitational Baseball Tournament was a blast every year.

Best years of my life!

Name: Tony Richards (former player) Sent: April 2nd 2008
It is impossible to put into words what UCR baseball means to me. There are too many good stories (some that aren't fit to print) to narrow it down to just one. The experience that I had at UCR has made me the person that I am today. The coaching staff may have changed in 50 years but one thing has remained constant. They are there not only to win games but to shape men. The respect for the game that we all had instilled in us from day one is what carries us into successful lives after baseball. Coach Smitheran and Coach Smith and numerous other coaches impacted all of our lives in a deep and profound way. In our memories the victories seem larger and the losses seem to fade away. I am proud to say that I am, and will always be, a UCR baseball player.

Good Times

Name: Jeff Dunbar (alumni) Sent: April 1st 2008
I had a lot of great memories at UCR! Thanks for the good times!

Congratulations, Highlanders!

Name: Ariel (alumni) Sent: March 26th 2008
Congratulations, UCR Highlanders, on fifty years of baseball! I'm sorry I missed the team while you were in Lubbock (I'm at Texas Tech now).

Ya! Go UCR!

Name: Andrew (student) Sent: March 18th 2008
Keep the tradition alive, GOOOO UCR!


Name: Alex Y. Lee (alumni) Sent: March 17th 2008
UCR Baseball program it has to be one of the best in the nation. Keep up the good work!

Last Season

Name: Brian Dunlap (alumni) Sent: March 15th 2008
I was at the game last year, as a student, that won the Big West for UCR. I loved it so much I hope to be present for many more. Let's go UCR!

UCR Baseball

Name: Michael Scarano (staff) Sent: March 14th 2008
Thanks for putting UCR Baseball on the national map and for bringing the Riverside community together with yesteryear's RBI. May the next 50 years yield many more rewards and great memories.

UCR Baseball

Name: Thomas LaRocca (alumni) Sent: March 13th 2008
This is the one programs that UCR Alumni can be proud of. Thanks for the memories!