Amid all of the administrative changes of the last year in Johnson County High Schools various athletic programs, there have been few stories quite as positive as Coach Nicholas Perkins recent departure from Longhorn Baseball. An alumni who himself played for Head Coach Pete Pavusek before moving on to college ball at Alice-Lloyd in Kentucky, Perkins has been Pavuseks right hand man for the past four years.
In that time the program saw a huge state tournament run in 2012 and had more than half a dozen players move on to take positions on college teams. Now with that success behind him, Perkins is turning the first few pages on the next chapter of his baseball career and is stepping up as an assistant coach with the Emory & Henry College Wasps near Glade Spring, VA. Ive been intrigued by college baseball since about 2011, Perkins said about the decision to change pace. I made a few more contacts and just reached out to Coach McCall and hes allowed me the opportunity to get my feet wet in college baseball.
Only a couple of weeks into the position and just now starting fall practice, Perkins has already been very busy adjusting to this new level of the sport. Im still very much in the learning stages but its fun. I obviously dont know the players well. Im still learning whos a freshman, whos a senior, whos a left fielder, whos a pitcher, but its enjoyable.
A NCAA Division 3 team, Perkins seemed most excited to be able to help with the programs recruiting, especially in the area of Northeast Tennessee. This is an exciting time, Perkins began. Its a time of learning new things and another stop on my baseball journey. Although its a small college, Ive noticed that the speed of the game is quicker. It hasnt taken me long to realize it is a different level, a higher level. Im intrigued by higher-level baseball. Theyre allowing me to help with recruiting, and Im excited about coaching players who really love the game, who are passionate about the game of baseball.
An ongoing process, Perkins first got into Coaching back in 2008, starting off his career in Johnson County. A year later he went on a short stint with the Happy Valley Warriors but was soon back home in Mountain City. Developing a lot of success under Coach Pavusek, Perkins readily admits he will miss the Longhorns and the role he played in the program.
I love Johnson County Longhorn baseball and I will forever be indebted to Coach Pavusek for allowing me to coach in his program and allowing me to grow as a coach under him, Perkins said.
To read the entire article, pick up a copy of this week's Tomahawk.