Iowa’s Brecht balancing baseball and football this spring
IOWA CITY, Iowa (KCRG) - “I’ve played a lot of sports my whole life, but not at this level, obviously. When I first started it was tough. I’ve kind of gotten the hang of it with my schedule and everything, but it’s tough,” said Iowa freshman Brody Brecht.
Juggling the work load as a single-sport student athlete can be demanding, but Brody Brecht continues to find a balance between spring football and the grind of Iowa’s Big Ten baseball schedule.
“I’m trying my best at both. I’m prioritizing baseball right now, so obviously I can’t be at all the football drills. I’m taking a little step back there, but when fall picks up, I’m taking a step back at baseball and focusing on football,” said Brecht.
Brecht has appeared in 10 games, posting a 3.00 ERA. He’s earned 30 strikeouts through 15 innings. His wow factor is his fast ball which can reach 100 mph. Head Coach Rick Heller said the key for Brecht moving forward is locating his fast ball early in the count.
“When they know the fastball is coming, even though they know it’s 100, he’s giving up hits here. I don’t think that’s happened to him much in the past and now guys are tuning into the scouting report on him. It’s up to him to change that,” said Heller.
“You’re on a short leash here in college. In high school, you could work out a lot of stuff. There’s been times where I’ve gotten taken out when I could have worked through that, but it’s part of the game. You don’t make a mess or someone is going to have to clean it up for you,” added Brecht.
Although baseball is his priority, he still practices with the football team when he doesn’t have a baseball game. On game days, he’s doing his homework to potentially earn a spot in the wide receiver mix after redshirting last season. Wide receivers coach Kelton Copeland said he’s been impressed by the dual commitment from Brecht.
“It would be easy for him to be like ‘coach, I can’t make it this morning. We had a late trip last night. I can’t make it, I’ll see you the next day.’ That’s not Brody. Brody is at every meeting and Brody is at every practice that he’s able to be at,” said Copeland.
Both coaching staffs praised Brecht for his communication during this cross-over period.
“He’s gone beyond measure to make sure he’s been accountable to football and to his other sport baseball,” said Copeland.
“He’s a mature kid and he handles his business off the field extremely well,” added Heller.
Brecht says he’s thankful for the support from both programs. He plans to be a continue his two-sport pursuit for as long as he can.
“You know eventually one day I’m going to have to pick, but hopefully that isn’t for a couple years or so,” he said.
The Iowa baseball team is back in action beginning Friday, April 15. The Hawkeyes will host Minnesota for a three-game homestand.
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