sunny.png
Tuesday May 24th, 2022 4:44PM

Let's play 2: Baseball, football combo tests few who do both

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Brody Brecht's schedule is so full, sometimes he writes notes to himself to make sure he's where he needs to be and when.

The Iowa freshman is working double-duty this spring. He's a pitcher on the baseball team and a wide receiver on the football team.

With baseball in season and football going through spring practice, it's all about time management.

“You kind of have to prioritize,” Brecht said. “And you also have to make time for academics, because those are important, too. It’s about getting done what you need to get done.”

Brecht is among at least a half-dozen Division I athletes who are playing baseball and participating in spring football simultaneously this year, according to conference and school sports information directors who responded to an Associated Press survey.

The others known to be doing both are Kansas outfielder-running back Devin Neal and first baseman-tight end Trevor Kardell, Michigan outfielder-linebacker Joey Velasquez, Georgia outfielder-receiver Randon Jernigan, Citadel outfielder-defensive back Dominick Poole and St. Thomas (Minnesota) pitcher-punter Kolby Gartner.

At least another dozen athletes play baseball and football, but were either injured or not participating in spring football this year.

Iowa's Brecht has a high ceiling in both sports.

Brecht, who is on a football scholarship, was projected as a high-round pick in last summer’s Major League Baseball draft, but he made it clear he wanted to play two sports for the Hawkeyes.

“He’s a mature kid and he handles his business off the field extremely well,” Iowa baseball coach Rick Heller said.

The 6-foot-4, 205-pounder from Ankeny was the 2021 Gatorade state high school baseball player of the year and has established himself in the Hawkeyes' bullpen. He's 1-2 with a 2.65 ERA and 31 strikeouts in 17 innings over 11 appearances. His fastball has topped 100 mph 21 times this season.

In football, he was a two-time first-team all-state selection and as a senior was a 247Sports composite three-star recruit. He didn't appear in a football game for the Hawkeyes last season, mostly because of a thumb injury that set him behind, but he's in contention for a starting wide receiver job this fall.

“It would be easy for him to say, ‘Coach, I can’t make it this morning. We had a late (baseball) trip last night, can’t make it, see you all the next day,’ ” wide receivers coach Kelton Copeland said. “That’s not Brody. Brody’s at every meeting, Brody’s at every practice he can be at.”

There is a balancing act with baseball and spring football going on at the same time.

Brecht’s football work in the spring is non-contact, but he does go through weight training, meetings with coaches and route running drills with the other receivers and quarterbacks.

“When he can, when he’s available, he’s practicing with us," Copeland said.

Raimond Braithwaite, the football team's strength and conditioning coach, understands the challenges Brecht faces and is flexible. Some days Brecht will tell Braithwaite that the baseball team will return from a road game in the wee hours and that it might be better for him to sleep instead of doing a football weight workout that could start as early as 6 a.m.

“That makes a ton of sense," Braithwaite said, adding that it would be counterproductive for an athlete in Brecht's position to overextend himself physically. "So we have to be very intelligent in what we do with him.”

Brecht has progressed well in his first season of college baseball. He struck out seven in four innings against Ball State in his first appearance, and in his first home game his first three pitches clocked over 100 mph.

Brecht has been at his best the last two weeks, allowing one hit while striking out 16 in 8 1/3 innings.

Brecht’s two-sport success started in high school. He was 10-0 with a 0.56 ERA as a senior, striking out 126 in 61 1/3 innings in leading Ankeny to the Iowa Class 4A state semifinals in 2021. That came after a football season in which he had 42 catches for 599 yards and 12 touchdowns, helping Ankeny win the 2020 Class 4A state championship.

Brecht’s schedule will be busy in the summer, too.

He considered playing baseball in the Cape Cod League, but that would have kept him out of the football team's summer workouts. So he will remain on campus for football workouts and drive 90 miles on days he'll pitch for the Clinton LumberKings in the Prospect League.

“I’ve been doing this my whole life,” Brecht said. “I wouldn’t be doing it if I wasn’t having fun and if I didn’t love it. But I’m having fun.”

___

More AP college sports: https://apnews.com/hub/college-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Baseball , AP Online Football, College Sports, AP Online - Georgia News, AP Sports - College Baseball, AP Sports - College Football
© Copyright 2022 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Let's play 2: Baseball, football combo tests few who do both
Brody Brecht’s schedule is so full that sometimes he make notes as a reminder of where he needs to be and when
3:16AM ( 5 minutes ago )
Israeli police storm Jerusalem holy site after rock-throwing
Israeli police in full riot gear stormed a sensitive Jerusalem holy site sacred to Jews and Muslims on Friday after Palestinian youths hurled stones at a gate where they were stationed
2:41AM ( 40 minutes ago )
Love thy enemy: Critics key for Macron in France's election
Disgruntled left-wing voters whose candidates were knocked out in the first round of France's election are the wild cards in the winner-takes-all runoff on Sunday
2:37AM ( 44 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Curry, Poole, Thompson lead Warriors past Nuggets, 118-113
Stephen Curry and Jordan Poole scored 27 points each, Klay Thompson made six 3-pointers on his way to 26 points and the Golden State Warriors muscled past the Denver Nuggets 118-113 on Thursday night to take a 3-0 lead in the playoff series
1:05AM ( 2 hours ago )
Grizzlies claw back from 26 down, beat Wolves in Game 3
Desmond Bane made seven 3-pointers and had 26 points and the Memphis Grizzlies overcame a 26-point deficit to beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 104-95 on Thursday night for a 2-1 lead in the first-round playoff series
11:49PM ( 3 hours ago )
LGBTQ leader is key in blocking Kansas ban on trans athletes
Kansas appears unlikely to join the growing number of states banning transgender athletes female sports in schools and colleges
11:46PM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Sports
Gausman shuts down Red Sox, Blue Jays hold on for 3-2 win
Kevin Gausman took a shutout into the ninth inning and Jordan Romano escaped with a save as the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Boston Red Sox 3-2
5:49PM ( 9 hours ago )
FAA failure to tell Capitol of parachute stunt led to alert
The Federal Aviation Administration’s failure to notify Capitol Police about a parachute stunt at a nearby baseball stadium led to an alert and urgent evacuation of the U.S. Capitol, a law enforcement official says
5:34PM ( 9 hours ago )
Cabrera intentionally walked with 2,999 hits, Tiger fans boo
Miguel Cabrera was intentionally walked in the eighth inning with 2,999 career hits, setting off a loud chorus of boos and derisive chants at Comerica Park as the Detroit Tigers beat the New York Yankees 3-0
4:18PM ( 11 hours ago )
AP Online Baseball
Record 8 teams head into NFL draft without 1st-round pick
The Super Bowl champion Los Angeles Rams should have plenty of company sitting out the first round of the NFL draft next week
12:20PM ( 15 hours ago )
Texas woman drops lawsuit claiming Jerry Jones is her father
A 25-year-old Texas woman who sued Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, alleging he is her biological father, has dropped her lawsuit
12:03PM ( 15 hours ago )
Watson embraced by teammates in Browns' offseason program
Deshaun Watson is getting to know his new Browns teammates
6:10PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Online Football
Wright resigns as Villanova coach, Neptune takes over
Jay Wright shocked college basketball Wednesday night with his immediate resignation at Villanova, the Big East program he led to two national championships and four Final Fours in a Hall of Fame career
10:28PM ( 1 day ago )
Kentucky's Oscar Tshiebwe to return for senior season
Kentucky forward Oscar Tshiebwe says he will return for his senior season with the Wildcats after a breakout season in which he swept national player of the year awards
3:37PM ( 1 day ago )
Five Alive! Oklahoma rallies to claim 5th national title
Oklahoma captured its fifth NCAA women’s gymnastics title, rallying from last after the first rotation to the top spot at the end behind a stellar performance from junior Ragan Smith
4:59PM ( 5 days ago )
College Sports
College baseball goes high-tech to send pitch calls to mound
A growing number of college baseball teams are moving away from the tradition of catchers using their fingers and hands for pitch signs
2:25PM ( 2 weeks ago )
Bubble life: China takes COVID sports routine to new extreme
Officially, the Beijing Olympics are taking place inside what organizers are calling “the enclosed compound activity area.”
4:09AM ( 2 months ago )
Va. Tech runs away from Georgia Tech behind Aluma 81-66
Keve Aluma scored 24 points on 8-for-11 shooting and 8 for 9 from the foul line and Virginia Tech led most of the way in an 81-66 win over Georgia Tech. Michael Devoe’s layup pulled the Yellow Jackets into a tie at 23 with 8:26 remaining before halftime
11:42PM ( 2 months ago )
AP Sports - College Baseball
Saban: Current state of college football not 'sustainable'
Alabama coach Nick Saban is concerned about the current state of college football
1:30PM ( 1 week ago )
Ex-Texas QB Casey Thompson embraces fresh start at Nebraska
Nebraska has not officially named its starting quarterback but all indications point to it being Texas transfer Casey Thompson
2:48PM ( 1 week ago )
Coach K on an NCAA revamp: 'Time to look at the whole thing'
The sport Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski is leaving is run by an organization he doesn’t much recognize anymore
5:26PM ( 2 weeks ago )
AP Sports - College Football
Israeli police storm Jerusalem holy site after rock-throwing
Israeli police in full riot gear stormed a sensitive Jerusalem holy site sacred to Jews and Muslims on Friday after Palestinian youths hurled stones at a gate where they were stationed
2:41AM ( 40 minutes ago )
Love thy enemy: Critics key for Macron in France's election
Disgruntled left-wing voters whose candidates were knocked out in the first round of France's election are the wild cards in the winner-takes-all runoff on Sunday
2:37AM ( 44 minutes ago )
Possible mass graves near Mariupol shown in satellite images
New satellite images show what appear to be mass graves near Mariupol in southern Ukraine
2:04AM ( 1 hour ago )
Southwest fire crews brace for return of dangerous winds
Firefighters battling a half-dozen wildfires in the Southwest are bracing for the return of ferocious winds
2:02AM ( 1 hour ago )
Brunson, Mavericks beat Jazz 126-118 to take 2-1 series lead
Jalen Brunson scored 31 points playing with a bruised back and the Dallas Mavericks — without the injured Luka Doncic — beat the Utah Jazz 126-118 on Thursday night to take a 2-1 lead in the first-round playoff series
1:12AM ( 2 hours ago )