Spring Hill College renames baseball field in honor of Coach Frank Sims

Spring Hill College renames baseball field in honor of Coach Frank Sims
Spring Hill College baseball head coach Frank Sims enjoyed his 1,000th career win in April. Spring Hill has renamed its baseball field Sims-Galle Baseball Field in honor of Sims, its coach for the past 37 years. (Mike Kittrell)

Spring Hill College President E. Joseph Lee, Ph.D., recently announced that the college’s Stan Galle Baseball Field will now be named Sims-Galle Baseball Field, in honor of Coach Frank Sims.

Sims announced his retirement in February, indicating that the 2022 season would be his last. On Tuesday, April 19, he cemented 1,000 career wins with the Badgers’ win over the University of West Florida.

“That is a big honor. It’s been 37 years and I never thought about that, really,” Sims said. “They said they were going to put my name up there with Stan’s and I thought, ‘Man, that’s really cool.’ That caught me by surprise, I’ll be honest.”

Athletic Director Joe Niland said the plan had been in the works for a while, and only after speaking with members of Stan Galle’s family to get their approval.

“We thought about different things we could do to honor him,” Niland said. “We’ve only had, when you think of baseball coaches over the last 70 years, when you discount one year with [Steve] Kittrell and a year of [Glenn] Vickery, there have only been two baseball coaches — Stan Galle and Frank Sims.”

Spring Hill College baseball head coach Frank Sims celebrated his 1,000th career win April 19 against West Florida. Sims announced his plans to retire at the conclusion of the 2022 season. (Mike Kittrell)

Sims holds the record for most career victories at Spring Hill and his tenure includes 27 20-win seasons, seven 30-win seasons, two 40-win seasons and six conference championships. Spring Hill appeared in the NAIA Regional Tournament four times during his years and Sims has been honored as a Conference Coach of the Year on five occasions, with the latest being the 2014 Independent Collegiate Athletic Association (ICAA) honor in NCAA Division II.

During Spring Hill’s 2015 NCAA Division II transition season, the Badgers rang up a perfect 16-0 mark in the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC) and a 26-14 record overall. In 2016, the Badgers once again topped the SIAC with an 18-3 conference record and a 29-16 mark overall. In 2019, the Badgers captured their first SIAC tournament title and appeared in the NCAA DII South Region Championship Tournament. Sims was inducted into the Alabama Baseball Coaches Hall of Fame in 2017. The Badgers won the 2022 SIAC Tournament Championship where Sims was named the “Coach of the Tournament” and SHC secured the team’s second trip to an NCAA Division II South Region Championship Tournament.

Before joining the Badgers in 1985, Sims was the head coach at Milton College in Wisconsin, where he compiled a 36-10 record and reached the NAIA Regional Tournament during the 1982 season. He began his coaching career as an assistant coach at his alma mater, Eastern Illinois University, where he received his bachelor’s degree in health, physical education and recreation in 1977.

After a successful three-year stint as the head coach at Sparta High School in Illinois from 1976 to 1980, he became a graduate assistant coach at Morehead State University in Kentucky in 1980-81. Sims later completed his master’s in health, physical education and recreation at the University of Wisconsin at Whitewater, where he served as a graduate assistant coach from 1982 to 1985. Sims and his wife, Dana, have four children and six grandchildren.

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