CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – Late is always better than never.
Rossview baseball standout Blake Williams was only a few days away from taking a visit to Cleveland State with the possibility with signing with the community college, but Tennessee Martin gave the Hawks senior a call, asking him to first take a trip to Martin.
By the time Williams left, he had agreed to join UT Martin’s baseball team as a walk-on, and under the best of circumstances, a scholarship may be in Williams’ future.
“They never told me that specifically, but I know that I will have to work for everything I earn on that team,” Williams said. “I’m excited for the opportunity because this whole thing kind of happened pretty late and I’m glad it happened.”
Williams was playing a summer league game with the Clarksville Orioles in Memphis when he caught the eyes of Martin coaches. Orioles coach Jared Hill passed Williams’ phone number to the Skyhawks coaches, and last Friday Williams received a call from the coaching staff.
“They asked me to come down for a visit and I did,” Williams added. “I went there (Monday) and it really made an impression on me. When they asked me if I’d like to be part of the program, I said ‘of course.'”
Williams joins a team that has struggled in recent years. Last season the Skyhawks were just 9-42 and only 5-25 in the Ohio Valley Conference. A shortstop for the Hawks, Williams was recruited as a player that could play any position.
“I think they liked that I am a little versatile,” Williams said. “They can move me around in the infield and maybe I can add some depth at positions.”
The Skyhawks lost 10 seniors from last season, including three who played primarily in the infield.
“This will be a whole new foundation for me,” Williams said. “Nothing will be given to me. I know I have a lot of work to do and I want to go in there and work hard and see what happens.”
Williams was a part of a senior class at Rossview that saw the Hawks win three straight District 10 regular season and tournament titles from his freshman season to his junior campaign. This year, Rossview captured the program’s first ever region title and reached the Class AAA sectional for the fourth straight year.
“Rossview was great,” Williams said. “The coaching staff and my teammates, they really are the ones that have prepared me for this next chapter. I couldn’t have asked for a better situation for me at the high school level. (Former) coach (Jason) Rice taught me to have tough skin and to continue to work hard and good things will happen.”
George Robinson. Prep writer. 245-0747. email@example.com. Follow on Facebook and Twitter: @Cville_Sports.