Level-Headed Butera's Coach's Mentality Key In Standout Year
Published: Monday, April 30, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 19:01
“Blake is able, at a really young age, to just focus on his job and do what he has to do at the time,” Gambino said. “There can be a lot of crazy stuff going on, and he just focuses in on the task at hand and has great at-bats. I have a lot of confidence in him in any situation, as does the rest of the team.”
Butera thrives off of his incredible focus and rare ability to stay level-headed in any situation. The Eagles have struggled to find consistency this year, defeating the nation’s top team in Florida State while also falling to lesser opponents in midweek games. Throughout the up-and-down season, Butera has remained a rock and a model of consistency, even though he’s just a first-year player.
“That Florida State win was huge,” he said. “We all know we can compete with the best teams in the country. We’ve played really well against big-time teams. We lost a tough one on Friday and Saturday, but Sunday we just played our game and beat them. It wasn’t really a shock because we know how good we can be. It really just showed us how good we actually are.”
As a potential major in human development or psychology, Butera is preparing himself to be a coach after his time as a player. While listening to him talk about the team, that coach’s mentality shines through with ease.
“It’s really tough, because against FSU, GT, UVA, those guys that we beat, those are top-25 teams and we play really well against them and we beat them, and then we come out in those midweek games and we play inconsistently. It’s just tough. It’s tough seeing we can beat the best teams in the country, but then we don’t always show up to play. When we play how we play, we can beat anybody.”
This BC squad has shown it has the talent to compete in one of the nation’s best conferences, and Butera can see that the Eagles are close to getting there.
“We just need to focus more every game. We need to be more consistent with how we prepare going into games. And more consistent with how we play every team, just play every team the same way, no matter who it is.”
He has also made sure to take advantage of having Gambino around to strengthen his ability as a coach in the future.
“I talk to Coach about it a lot. He’s helped me out by coming up to me at different parts in the season. Teaching me lessons about becoming a coach, and showing me what to look at and what to look for and how to help the team out.”
The close relationship between player and coach makes the mentoring process even easier for Gambino and Butera.
“Coach Gambino and I are pretty close,” Butera said. “He’s a real good guy, and we get along pretty well because we both understand that you need to play hard every day. We understand that how hard you work off the field is just the same as how hard you’re going to work on the field. If you’re not working hard in the classroom and in the weight room then you’re not going to play well in the games.”
With a crew of talented young players and a strong coach leading the way, this BC baseball program is poised for a bright future. If at any point during that future the game is on the line and No. 3 is up at the plate, everyone in the dugout and in the stands can breathe a collective sigh of relief, because the game will be in good, composed hands.