By Bruce Campbell, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle
ENID, Okla. —
As Dorothy said, “There’s no place like home.’’
That was one of the main selling points for Chisholm’s Garron Nixon in signing his junior college baseball letter of intent with Northern Oklahoma College Enid Tuesday.
“I really wanted my parents to be able to watch me play,’’ said the Longhorn infielder. “They were the ones who pushed me to being the person I am today.’’
Being close to home wasn’t the only reason. He was impressed with the Jets’ indoor facility and the chance to play at David Allen Memorial Ballpark.
“You can’t beat the facilities there,’’ he said. “The indoor facility is really nice. When I went there for a visit, the players treated me like I was one of their own. The coaches (Raydon Leaton and Scott Mansfield) were really nice. It was the best decision for me.’’
Nixon also had visited Independence, Kan., but when the Jets offered, he made up his mind immediately.
“I wanted to sign as early as possible,’’ he said. “I didn’t wait for any other offers.’’
Signing early takes some pressure off him going into his senior year.
“I don’t have to worry about the numbers I have to put up to get a scholarship,’’ he said. “It’s nice knowing I have one (a scholarship).’’
Nixon’s goals for his senior year are “to have a lot of RBI and hit six or seven home runs.’’
Nixon participated in NOC Enid’s All-Star Classic this past summer where up to 10 to 12 coaches viewed talent from across the state.
“That was good exposure for me,’’ he said.
His biggest adjustment to junior college will be seeing better pitching.
“The high school pitchers don’t have the control overall that the college pitchers do,’’ he said. “I’m going to be seeing better velocity. It will be a challenge.’’
He wanted to go to a junior college to get experience and a chance to play in the Big 12 Conference in two years.
“That’s my dream,’’ Nixon said. “I think this will be better for me.’’
He has played with or against future teammates such as Brett McNaughton of Pioneer and Stetson Buller of Timberlake.
“I’ve been to a few of their games, but not as many as I would have liked to have,’’ he said. “This is where I want to go.’’
NOC Enid assistant coach Scott Mansfield said Nixon made an impression when he worked out with the team.
“He looked like he fit in with our guys,’’ Mansfield said. “He didn’t show any nerves. He has a lot of growing up to do, and I hope he does it with us.’’
Head coach Raydon Leaton said Nixon “can be really good.’’
“Everybody we talked to had good things to say about him,’’ Leaton said. “He’s made a lot of improvement.’’
We don’t look at stats. We just want to know if he can win and compete.’’