June Coach of the Month - BILL HOOPES

TheGluv has the pleasure to celebrate Firecracker Coach Bill Hoopes as our June Coach of the Month!  His team just took the title at the D9 Power 32 tournament, and so we wanted to get to know a bit more about Bill and what makes his coaching so influential.  Read on for more.

 Where have you coached?

My first coaching job was with Clearwater Little League in Clearwater, FL.  I then moved to my first travel position with the Safety Harbor Stone Crabs, also in Florida.  We were a great team, qualified for ASA and went to Indiana.  Now I am with the Firecrackers and that has been for the last year.  It's been a great time.  I have loved every minute of it...

Where are you from?

Clearwater, FL.  I have lived here my whole life minus my time in the United States Navy.

 What's one word your team would use to describe you?


 Do you have a game good luck charm?  If so, what is it?

I came to California for spring break this year and met Coach Rob Sanchez.  He gave me an FC IE coin and I have carried it with me to every game since.  It's my luck Firecracker coin.

 Does coaching run in your family?

No.  I was the first one in my family that I know of to take up coaching, especially in softball.  I am very glad I did.  While the days are long, the pressure can be heavy at times, the reward of seeing your players achieve what they have been working on, or overcome a struggle that has kept them down is amazing.

 What are your known for out on the field?

Keeping players up, sometimes they call me the preacher because I get deep into conversation and have a tone that sounds like Sunday church.  I try to get the girls to see the bigger picture, but also relax in the moment.

 What's your best motivational catch phrase?

"It's not how you play, but how you feel."  Meaning that if you feel good, you are in the moment and in the game you will be more prepared and ready for war.  Every game on the field is a battle and you have to feel the moment and go attack.

 What is your goal as a coach?

To help every one of my kids live their dreams and to turn these awesome young ladies into not just solid athletes and softball players, but responsible women and powerful leaders.

 If you could take your team anywhere in the world, where would you take them?

California for PGF Nationals would be great in 2017!!!

 What is your favorite moment as a coach?

WOW, there's no way to pick that one, too many great moments with too many great kids...Calling out one of the many great moments that I have been a part of would not be fair.  I have had the privilege to work with some great kids who have done some amazing things.

 If there is one thing your players take away from your coaching style, what would that thing be?

Having spent 15 years in the Navy, I would say that it would be to be respectful no matter what, not get down on yourself when you are losing, and to always keep to the Firecracker code and Play with Honor in everything you do.  Nothing today is guaranteed tomorrow.

Finally, I tell my parents the greatest information that was every passed down to me.  That "what you do today...will follow you for the rest of your life," so do the right thing no matter what, it makes a difference!

Thank you, Bill!!