Bandits sign top hitting, pitching instructor as head coach
Elgin, Ill. - A 22-year veteran of fastpitch softball in Western Michigan and Northern Indiana, Darrick Brown will now be stepping into the dugout as the new head coach of the Chicago Bandits.
“Darrick brings an outstanding coaching resume to the table with experience in all levels of ball except professional,” said Bandits Owner Bill Sokolis. “I know he has the tools to start career as an NPF coasucceed as a professional coach.”
Coaching since the age of 19, Brown has quickly become one of the top hitting and pitching instructors in the United States. In his 18 years of coaching, he has guided over 30 teams. Currently Brown is the Head Varsity Softball Coach at Portage Northern High School in Portage, Mich., and the Head Varsity Hockey Coach for the Kalamazoo Eagles.
“I’m excited for the opportunity [Bandits Owner] Bill Sokolis has given me,” said Brown. “I’m looking forward to meeting the players and getting started. Having a new stadium is a great opportunity for Chicago to expand it’s exposure of National Pro Fastpitch, the sport and to show the city we’re serious about the Bandits.”
One of Brown’s greatest moments in the softball world came when, at the age of 21, he squared off against Mike Branchaud of King and his Court. Brown blast the 90 MPH fastball over the centerfield wall, beating King and his Court.
Brown will certainly have a challenge ahead of him as the 2011 season approaches. The retirements of infield cornerstone and 2010 National Pro Fastpitch MVP Stacy May and pitching superstar Jennie Finch, along with the recent acquisition of Taryne Mowatt will bring a new emphasis on rebuilding team chemistry as retaking the top spot as
“You can’t replace May and Finch,” said Brown. “They are both great ambassadors for the sport of softball. We will need to find that leadership and passion from returning players and players we decide to bring in to replace them. I’m confident that Bill [Sokolis], Aaron [Moore, Bandits GM] and I can add the right mix of players to keep the chemistry needed to continue the winning ways that May and Finch helped create.”
Brown has signed a one year contract with the Chicago Bandits. For more information about Darrick Brown, visit www.brownfastpitch.com.
“His style on the outside is similar to [former Bandits coach] Mickey Dean’s style, but inside the dugout I think he’ll bring a new presence to the team with his hitting and pitching expertise.”
The Chicago Bandits will open the 2011 season in a new stadium located in Rosemont, Ill. Season tickets for the 2011 season are now available at www.chicagobandits.com.