Veteran Physical Education teacher Aaron Ford will be Wildcat Nation’s Varsity Baseball Coach position for the 2020-2021 Season. Coach Ford told us he loves coaching baseball considering it a “wonderful and complicated sport.” One of his primary goals while coaching baseball will be having the team get along and work together efficiently. “I enjoy finding out athletes’ unique personalities, and their abilities to contribute to the productivity of the team,” Coach Ford said.
Coach Ford graduated from Ukiah High School in1990, growing up in the Ukiah Valley. He told us he has always loved playing sports. As a Ukiah High student, Coach Ford participated in four years of baseball, football, and one year of basketball.
After graduating from Ukiah High, Coach Ford chose to attend Butte College. He played for Butte College’s baseball team. During his college years, he experienced a severe car accident, which led him to move back home.
While he was recovering from his injuries, he decided to attend Mendocino College. Taking classes at Mendocino College, Coach Ford spoke to head baseball coach Kevin Smallcomb who convinced Coach Ford to give baseball another shot. A month after returning home, Coach Ford was back on the field and started playing with the Eagle Baseball team.
After playing a season with the Eagles, Coach Ford said he had two options: attend Sonoma State to continue his academics and baseball or head off to Nebraska. After considering his options, he decided to head off to Nebraska, where he received a scholarship to play baseball at Bellevue University.
In 1999, Coach Ford’s senior year at Bellevue, his team won the NAIA National Championship, which he called the “completion of my playing opportunities.” In 2018, Coach Ford and a teammate would receive the highest honor of Bruin Baseball by being inducted into the Bruin’s Athletic Hall of Fame as a 1995 National Championship team member.
Coach Ford got his start teaching physical education at Mendocino College in the physical education department, where he was the assistant baseball coach from 1996 to 1997. He later taught physical education at St Mary’s Catholic School in 1999, then received a full-time position as a physical education teacher at Fort Bragg middle school from 1999-2005.
During the summer of 2005, Coach. Ford was hired to teach at Ukiah High School. During his first six years at Ukiah High, he primarily taught physical education. Since then, he has taught more classes like computer careers, psychology, and adaptive physical education into his further years. He also was a class advisor for two classes: 2010 and 2015.
Coach Ford enjoys teaching and coaching sports. Since he had been a physical education teacher for over 20 years, he thinks that physical activity is essential to maintaining physical and mental health.
Coach Ford said that the COVID-19 pandemic has put most people in the community anxious and stressed. He feels that, especially during this epidemic, physical activity is vital. Coach Ford said, “physical activity will enhance our emotional well-being, improve our energy levels, and control our weight…. Creating an active lifestyle will also reduce heart and lung disease, help prevent cancer, and reduce the possibility of developing diabetes.”
UHS News would like to congratulate Coach Aaron Ford for his new position and looks forward to documenting the development of Wildcat Baseball.