ALLENDALE, Mich. (WOOD) — The Grand Valley State baseball team is off to a 23-8 start this season, thanks in large part to a Laker football standout.
Jamie Potts is a year-round student-athlete facing two very different types of challenges.
“Football beats you up over the course of a season,” Potts said. “Baseball is just a mental grind trying to get through it day to day.”
But the Ravenna native, and GVSU Junior has done much more than just ‘get through it.’ Potts earned All-GLIAC conference honors in football as a tight end and receiver, leading the Lakers with 11 touchdown catches.
“Football is definately an emotional game and the games are extremely intense,” Potts said. “Baseball’s a lot more laid back and you’re allowed to be a little more even keel throughout the process.”
Thirty-one games into the baseball season, the now-outfielder led the Lakers with an incredible .439 batting average — and at 6-foot-2 and 225 pounds, also leads in stolen bases with 10.
“It’s been a great start to the year for me, ” Potts said. “I’ve been lucky. I’ve gotten a few cheap hits here and there that have really helped. For the most part I’m just feeling comfortable in the box and am getting some good pitches to hit and doing some good things with them.”
In both sports, Potts is driven by the opportunity to compete.
“These are two teams that I play on that are extremely competitive and competing for playing time on these teams has always been difficult,” Potts said. “But that’s what I love about sports — competing and trying to be the best.”
The grind of both seasons is still secondary to Potts’ Allied Heath Services major and the grind of school.
“It’s hard to balance, but academics always come first,” Potts said. “When you’re on the road for most of the season, especially with baseball, it’s difficult to keep up with your school work. But that’s part of being a student athlete, keeping up with your school work and taking care of the performance on the athletic field as well.”
As for the sports, “I like them both equally,” Potts said.
“I can’t say I like one more than the other,” he continued. “I like them both for different reasons. The different emotional states you’re in during both of the them, I really enjoy that.”
And he has been equally as good at both this season.