Morgan has been a volunteer coach & umpire in the County of Newell since 2002 when he moved there. Before that he played Minor Ball out of Whitecourt where he finished high school. He played in Baseball Alberta and was part of a Bantam A provincial championship team in 1992, he was also a provincial championship runner up in Midget AA in 1995 when they lost to Westlock. While as an active player he also umpired at the lower divisions. As the eldest of six children, he would umpire games to help his siblings at times.
1) What do you feel are your coaching strengths? Being able to build relationships with the
players, teach them a love of the game with proper skill development, while at the same time helping to
build their confidence through positive feedback. I try really hard to explain to players all the things they did right on a play and explain how if we can fix one minor mistake to make them better.
2) What else do you do besides coaching in general? For years before I had children of my own, I
would umpire for free so that others could enjoy watching their children play without having to worry.
While umping I would always be fair and impartial and at times assist players & inexperienced coaches
because of my intense love for the game along with my knowledge gained from coaches in my past. For the past 2 years I’ve been the volunteer president of the Duchess Agricultural Society which owns & operates our community hall, curling rink, hockey arena & golf course; before I was president, I was a board member for 7 years. I’ve also been on the Duchess Minor Ball volunteer board for about 8 years serving as president for the past 5 years or so.
3) How do you develop trust with your players? Honesty. It starts with being honest and showing
respect to the players. I’ve been coaching my daughter’s teams since she started Tball in 2016 through to
U11 fastball in 2022, I plan to coach them again in the summer of 2023. While coaching this group that
started as co-ed and has since morphed to a girls only team. I jog, stretch & do the drills with them. I’ve
even gone so far as to get other parents involved in relay base running drills with the girls to keep it fun and get their compete levels up. All players are active participants regardless of skill level as long as they show up to practice and try their best, that’s all I ask.
4) What is the most rewarding part of coaching Little League? Being able to be part of the
team with my daughter and now my son and their friends. Coaching other people’s children and seeing the excitement they have when we run into each other in a grocery store or at a hockey game. I appreciate that the want to talk to me and tell me how excited they are for the next season even when it’s months away. I guess it’s rewarding to feel like I make a difference to the young athletes.
5) What is your example of a successful season? It would be easy to list the championship seasons and honestly, I’d be lying if I didn’t say that it’s awesome, but the most successful season I’ve felt I had was last year with the U11 Fastball girls. The team had 10 players (1 – 2nd year, 6 – 1st year & 3 – underage); we took the team to Softball Alberta provincials where we played both the eventual U11A & U11B provincial
champions in the round robin plus another team that finished in the top 8 of 24 teams and we didn’t win a game. After our last game we had a team meeting and I told the girls how proud I was for how hard they’d played and how much they’d grown as players for the season and one of them raised her hand to ask the following question “coach, can we do this again next year, this is the most fun I’ve ever had on a team and I don’t want it to end” & all the other girls clapped and said “so true and so much fun.” I’m not a person that shows many emotions but I was almost in tears because I knew I had made a difference for these players and how they’d remember that season and more than likely want to continue to play which helps me grow the program in our small rural community.