It was just another day at the ballpark, a day, according to Huntington University Head Baseball Coach Mike Frame, like any one of the hundreds that have come and gone during the past 21 seasons that he has been at the Forester helm.
On Saturday, March 4, the Foresters were at Campbellsville University in Kentucky for another routine doubleheader, but when Huntington knocked off the NAIA 10th-ranked Tigers 3-2, the ordinary day became historic as Coach Frame notched the 500th win of his career. While knowing the significance of his accomplishment, Frame has a pretty low-key attitude about the feat.
“I haven’t really thought that much about it,” said Frame. “Maybe later on I’ll look back on this and think ‘Wow, that was neat,’” but right now, it is just business as usual for Coach Frame and his Foresters as they get their 2006 season underway.
In the fall of 1984, Frame took over Huntington’s floundering baseball program. Four different coaches in as many years had taken its toll and the University administration was looking for someone to give the program stability. His original commitment to stay for three years has turned into 22 seasons, and 500 wins later, Frame shows no signs of relenting. Fourteen wins in his first season remains a career low for him and by Foresters also have captured the MCC Tournament Title three times. His teams have been above .500 in 12 of his 21 seasons with record highs of 35 wins in both the spring of 1988 and 1991. He has a career record of 500-419, all coming as Huntington’s skipper.
In addition to being named MCC Coach of the Year five times, Frame was selected as the NAIA District 21 and NCCAA District Coach of the Year each one time, and was one of eight coaches across the nation to receive NAIA Area Coach of the Year honors in 1987. Under Frame’s tutelage, four players have signed professional contracts, nine have received NAIA All-American honors, five have been honored as NAIA All-America Scholar-Athletes, and twenty-six players have earned MCC All-Conference honors.
With Frame still viewed as relatively young within the coaching ranks at 45 years old, 500 victories may end up as just a drop in the bucket by the time he hangs up his hat. But number 500 was special to Frame in a way that the next milestone may not be. Frame’s son, Thad, who is the Foresters’ sophomore shortstop and his nephew, Adam Culy, a sophomore catcher, were not only on hand to witness the win, but both scored a run to help secure the monumental victory. “One thing that was nice about this was the ability to share it with family. It was neat that Thad and Adam were a part of it.”