Coaches Corner: Charles Assey


asseyc-head.jpgCharleston Southern recruiting coordinator Charles Assey is in his first year at the Big South program after stints at his alma mater Presbyterian and St. Edwards in Texas. Assey grew up in the Palmetto State and the son of a coach, in his DP Spotlight he tells us how he got where he is, some influential people along the way and provides us some very good responses on some of his coaching philosophies. Enjoy getting to know Coach Assey.

DP-How many years have you been in coaching? What got you into the business?

CA-I am entering my 4th year. I have always wanted to get into coaching as I grew up in a coach’s house with my dad being a Head Baseball and Football Offensive Coordinator. Just have it in my blood I guess, never known anything but sports, especially baseball. I also enjoy helping young people get a chance to further their baseball careers as well as educational careers. I believe it is fun watching boys come into your program and hopefully develop and leave as young men/adults.

DP-What is the most rewarding thing about being a baseball coach? 

CA-Knowing that you can dictate and develop a young person’s life (obviously and hopefully in a positive way). Building relationships with these young men that hopefully they will pick up the phone 5-10 years down the road when they have graduated and moved on to call you and say hello. I think it is awesome to see young people develop over a certain period of time on the field, in the classroom, and as overall people.

DP-What does the term "coach" mean to you? 

CA-It means to "teach". I believe coaches are teachers on a field. I believe no one knows everything, even us coaches. You can always learn and never be satisfied. I feel like the day you wake up and are satisfied, you lose that hunger and should just hang it up. "Coach" ….means to teach the game, about life, develop young people, motivate, and discipline, but also care/love the men you coach. It is more than just on the field.

DP-What is something you wish everyone knew about your profession? 

CA-The hours we put in as collegiate coaches. It is not just done at practice in the afternoons from 2-5 PM. It is sincerely a year-around job that can be any hour of the day or night.

DP-We all know there is very little money in getting started in coaching at the college level yet the time involved is mind-boggling, why did you do it?

presby_picture1.jpgCA-As mentioned before I do it because for one, it is all I have ever known, and all I know to do. Two, I do it because I like the opportunity to teach and develop or motivate young players to do things maybe I couldn’t do or was never taught, and not just things I haven’t done or been taught, but also carry on things I have been taught to young players. I honestly also do it for the chance to be in Omaha, Nebraska and share that with my TEAM. I believe as coaches, we have to have goals as well or why do we ask our players to do so.

DP-When you hear the expression "old school baseball", what does that phrase mean to you? 

CA-This expression really just means playing the game hard, respecting the game. Myself or any player current did not invent this game nor were one of the first people to play this game. This game has been around a long time and will be around a long time going forward. Old school baseball really just means to respect the game, play the game the right way, and play the game hard by hustling every time the ball is in play. Getting on and off the field, playing for the TEAM concept over your own personal stats.

DP-What is the definition of a "student-athlete"? 

CA-Student-athlete is exactly what it says. I believe any coach would answer this the same way, and do not think it is a scientific question. It means to be a student first in the classroom, handling your grades then fulfilling the athletic part as well as any extra academic or community events that come along

DP-What is your most memorable experience as a baseball coach? 

CA-I would have to say as of now it was last season with Presbyterian. We were at #5 South Carolina and took them to 10 innings. We did end up losing the game, but to see our guys in their first year of Division I baseball play in that atmosphere and play fairly well against a team like USC, of which the majority of our guys grew up watching, was pretty awesome. It was a great collegiate atmosphere and baseball game.

DP-Your father was a very successful baseball coach, what was that like growing up and how has that helped you today?

CA-That is a question I get a lot. Asking me now…it was awesome experience, wouldn’t replace it and the things he instilled in me back then are now coming into light as I am coaching. Don’t get me wrong, when I was playing for him we definitely had our times and butted heads a few times, especially at home in the living room after a loss. But, as mentioned, the things he tried to teach us and work habits of "small things" he preached to us…definitely has paid off and made me person/coach that I am today.

DP-You spent some time coaching in Texas before returning to the Palmetto State. What took you there and what were some differences in recruiting a larger state?

CA-Well, Coach Jeremy Farber who was the assistant at PC when I played, received the Head Job at St. Edward’s University in Austin, TX. When I graduated from PC, he gave me the opportunity to get my foot into collegiate coaching as well as a chance to pay for my Graduate School. I could not replace that opportunity, so I got my foot in the door and received my Master’s Degree. Recruiting in Texas was and is definitely different. The state is so big, from High School kids and Junior College kids…there are so many players. I could literally stay within a 3 hour radius of Austin and recruit Austin, Houston, Dallas, San Antonio and College Station, and be just fine…but obviously we would get players out of that radius and out of the state. Being back in the ole Palmetto State has been great, making and rekindling a lot of connections but the state is small so you do have to venture out of SC. With that being said, being in TX has definitely helped with some connections out there.

DP-Who has made the greatest impression on you as a baseball coach and why? 

CA-I honestly have a tremendous amount of respect for a lot of different people. I mean obviously my dad as I played for him in high school, but along the way I have grown up watching Coach Jack Leggett, Coach Ray Tanner, had chance to work with and be around Texas Head Coach Augie Garrido, along with Jeremy Farber, Elton Pollock, and now Stuart Lake. I really feel like I take a little from each person to learn and develop myself. I think each coach is different in their approach and I like things each have done.

DP-Who are the best three players you have coached against? 

CA-Justin Smoak (South Carolina), Justin Bristow (East Carolina), Zach Putnam (Michigan)

DP-What does it mean to be a good teammate and is that important?

CA-A good teammate is one that is always putting guys next to him first before himself as well as overall TEAM. A good teammate always tries to stay positive but can be vocal in a disciplinarian way when needed. Teammate is on and off field and also making sure you as a person are doing right thing to hold up your end. You cannot just talk about it but must walk the walk too.

DP-Do you have any superstitions? If so, what?

CA-I honestly do not. Don’t believe in superstitions. I think as soon as something happens good, then something of failure is around the corner, and in reverse when something bad happens, then something good is around the corner. Cannot just focus on one thing all the time, so I just roll with the punches when it comes to superstitions.

DP-What do you see as the biggest difference in high school-aged players today versus when you played? 

CA-I honestly think the exposure they get and the amount they play. I feel like guys play on all these travel teams, go to showcases, etc. I remember when I played, I played legion and football. I don’t think HS players should shy away from other sports in HS. Every other sport they play can help their athletic ability and agility in different ways. If I am recruiting a guy that plays more than one sport as it is, then I can only get excited about how good he will be when I get him and he concentrates on just baseball.

DP-Now switching gears, think back to your days as a baseball player, please list any notable accolades:

CA-13 year old World Series, 15 year old World Series, 1998 SC AAA state championship, HS South Carolina All-Star Game,2003 Regional

DP-What is your greatest high school thrill? 

CA-Winning the State Championship in 1998 at Brookland-Cayce. Got to do that with a bunch of great guys that I am still close to today. We had about 11 guys that were in same 1999 graduating class that we played together all the way up through little league. Ole Coach Russell Triplett was on that team.

DP-Who were the best players you played against? 

CA-Michael Johnson (Georgetown HS/Clemson), Drew Meyer (Bishop England HS/South Carolina)

DP-Who has made the greatest impression on you as a person and why? 

CA-My mom has to be at top of list on that. Most people would think my dad cause he coached me and did a lot for me and he has been a huge influence, no doubt. My mom just has shown me how to put people first and how to persevere through rough times and be a tough individual.

DP-What MLB feat in history do you wish you’d been inside the stadium to witness and why? 

CA-Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire when McGwire broke the homerun record. I just think at that time, it did a lot for MLB as well as was a big time feat at that point.

DP-Who is you favorite athlete outside of baseball?

CA-Brett Favre

DP-Who is your favorite MLB pitcher and position player to watch and why? 

CA-Pitcher – Greg Maddux (his command, motivation, competitiveness, etc.) Position Player – Chipper Jones (just feel like he does a lot of good things overall, I am big on good hitters, and I think he is a good hitter) Plays his position well too.

DP-Who is your favorite MLB team? 

CA-Honestly do not have one. Know that is un-American especially since I coach the sport, but I honestly like watching all players and all teams, and respect what each of them do. Just have never gotten into following one team.

DP-What is your favorite sport to play other than baseball? 


DP-What is your favorite sport to watch other than baseball? 


DP-What are some of your hobbies? 

CA-Running and lifting weights. Don’t have much time for hobbies, but usually like my free time to get a workout in.

DP-What is your favorite movie?

CA-Major League

DP-Who is your favorite actor? Actress?

CA-Al Pacino, Julia Roberts

DP-What is your favorite meal?

CA-Any kind of grilled chicken and whatever can go with it.

DP-What is something people don’t know about you? 

CA-I went to Presbyterian College to play both football and baseball before ending up just playing baseball.

DP-If you could have dinner with three people in history, who would they be and why?

CA-John Wooden – to pick his brain apart on how he was able to win so much and do it with so many different teams, and get the most out of various kinds of people. Franklin D Roosevelt – pulled us out of the depression. That is a lot of people he was able to reach in a tough time. He saved an entire country. Yogi Berra– was part of a lot of Championships and was the core of the team at the catching position. Was a tough man.

DP-Where do you see yourself in ten years? 

CA-Coaching college baseball. I am not sure where or in what capacity, but I am very excited about being at Charleston Southern right now in my first year. I have no plans of leaving anytime soon. I believe good things can happen at Charleston Southern so, I will be coaching College Baseball.

DP-What is your opinion on the new rules that the NCAA recently adopted in regards to roster limitations, the APR and the 25% scholarship rule?

fsu_website_pic1.jpgCA-I personally have no problem with them and agree with them. For one, rules are rules and everyone has to follow them. I also think it helps smaller D-1 mid-major schools and it also challenges us coaches to not miss on recruits. I think it also gives the players more money as well.

DP-Give a high school player who is reading this article one piece of advice. 

CA-To just play the game hard every time they are on the field. Respect the game and play it hard. I know when I go to recruit, that is what I would like to see. You never know who is watching so don’t miss an opportunity because you were being lazy. Play every play and game like it is last one you may play.

DP-Coach Assey, this has been very good! Thank you so much for your time and good luck this spring!