Dot Richardson, two time Olympian has moved to Lynchburg, Va to become the head softball coach at Liberty University. Richardson is taking over for Paul Wetmore who has been with the softball program since 1994. Wetmore finished his coaching career with a 547-617-1 record. Now Liberty plans to take the program to a new level by striving to become national ranked and update the facilities. Richardson was recently interviewed by LU and explained she has three goals planned out:
1. Continue the Christ centered focus in the softball program.
2. Make the program more competitive and become nationally ranked.
3. Improve the softball budget to update facilities.
To watch the “Getting to Know Dot Richardson” interview, go to this link : http://www.liberty.edu/flames/index.cfm?PID=10854&TeamID=2
This is Richardson’s first official collegiate coaching position. She brings along with her an entire coaching staff which includes her husband, Bob Pinto, and Paige Cassady. Pinto has over 30 years of softball experience stretching from high school to professional levels. Cassady has been hired on to be the pitching coach. Cassady brings along several years of collegiate pitching experience from inside and outside the circle.
Left – Bob Pinto
Middle – Dot Richardson
Right – Paige Cassady
Along with Richardson’s three main goals, she mentions several attributing goals in her interview. Richardson hopes to help the female athletes in the softball program to reach their full potential as an athlete. Not everyone can be the best player on the field but she plans to help each player reach at their own individual highest level that is obtainable. Richardson also hopes to give these players the ability to impact others off the field when they graduate from LU. These might be the last years these players play the sport, so they need to be able to empower others once the game is over.
So what does this mean to the softball community in Lynchburg? Having such highly experienced and well-known softball figures in the community will greatly impact softball in Lynchburg. Richardson has been receiving hundreds of emails from interested high schoolers who want to play at Liberty. As a result, many of these players will end up getting involved with the nearby high school softball programs, travel softball teams, and even slowpitch leagues. Having these influencers will improve the local softball player’s skill levels and hopefully bring even more players into the system. Bringing Dot Richardson on board to the softball program at LU is a win not only for the university, but as well for the community.
Currently, LU’s softball field conditions are not very impressive. The field looks like a generic high school field and does not match up to other university’s facilities. Plans to update the field are in the works. Luckily, LU has just updated that baseball field. This upgrade will give Liberty a sample to go by when building the new softball field. The plan is to make the softball field a miniature version of the new baseball field. Below are pictures of both the new Liberty baseball field and the current softball field; which will be upgraded soon!
LU Baseball Field
LU Softball Field
Photo credit: http://www.liberty.edu/flames/index.cfm?PID=10867&CoachID=792&TeamID=2 and http://www.dailycommercial.com/sports/article_7ccc94bf-094b-5203-a679-7e9f2824b505.html