Southeast Missouri State Pitching Coach Says Academy Master’s Program Helping His Career Growth

By November 4, 2016Alumni
Curt Dixon

Southeast Missouri State assistant baseball coach Curt Dixon is pursuing his full time career in coaching while simultaneously pursuing his Master of Sports Science degree in sports administration and sports coaching from the United States Sports Academy.

Dixon, Southeast Missouri’s pitching coach and recruiting coordinator, is on schedule to complete his master’s degree this winter at the end of the baseball team’s early signing period for recruits. He said his education through the Academy’s online, sports focused approach has allowed him to grow as a full time college baseball coach while he furthers his education.

“In my situation, I would not have been able to take the path I’ve been on without the United States Sports Academy,” Dixon said. “I was able to start my coaching career at age 23, play three years professionally, and build my resume by coaching in the summer. The Academy’s distance learning option allows students like me to chase their profession while getting a degree wherever they are. The staff at the Academy is always informative and makes the experience very user friendly, no matter where you are.”

Dixon is a former college baseball player at the University of the Ozarks, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in political science in 2008. He played three years of independent baseball with the Southern Illinois Miners and Kalamazoo Kings of the Frontier League and the Continental League’s McKinney Blue Thunder and Big Bend Cowboys. He was a Continental League All-Star in 2009 after pitching to a 7-4 record.

“The Academy has really prepared me for all of the situations I have faced in my coaching career,” Dixon said. “Getting a degree from an institution that focuses only on sports is great for anyone in the coaching world. For my path, I would not have it any other way. With the help of the Academy I am getting to coach at the Division 1 level.”

He joined the Southeast Missouri State baseball staff in August. Prior to that, Dixon was the pitching coach at Eastern Oklahoma State, where he helped lead the team to National Junior College Athletic Association Region 2 championships in 2012 and 2016. Four of the pitchers under his tutelage were selected in the Major League Baseball draft, while 45 others went on to play at four-year institutions.

He served as the head coach of the Brazos Valley Bombers of the Texas Collegiate League during the summers while he was a member of the Eastern Oklahoma State staff. While he was the Brazos Valley coach, the team won the league championship four of five years. Eventually, Dixon hopes to be able to coach a team to the College World Series in Omaha, Neb.

“As good a baseball coach as Curt is, he is a better human being,” Southeast Missouri State head baseball coach Andy Sawyers said. “He is first and foremost an individual with great character and our players are lucky to be able to be mentored by him. Curt has made a name for himself as a talented up and coming coach by doing an excellent job at Eastern Oklahoma. Not only is he known as an excellent teacher of pitching, he also recruited many players to Eastern that have gone on to prestigious Division 1 universities, including Southeast Missouri.”

The United States Sports Academy is an independent, non-profit, accredited, special mission Sports University created to serve the nation and world with programs in instruction, research, and service. The role of the Academy is to prepare men and women for careers in the profession of sports. For more information about the Academy, call (251) 626-3303 or visit www.ussa.edu.