RC Athlete Kelly Learns To Handle Adversity

by Joseph Pavone-Chadwick
Shield Staff

A Q&A with a Rochester College student athlete.

Leo Kelly is junior interdisciplinary studies major with concentrations in business and pre-law from West Bloomfield, Michigan. He is a pitcher for the baseball team.

Q: Being a student athlete can be demanding on your time. How do you manage your time?

A: “My advisers are the ones who actually set up my schedule around my practices, so I don’t have to have anything interfere. To be completely honest, it’s not that hard. I just have practice in the mornings, I go to class in the afternoon, and on weekends I work. It’s really about it.”

Q: What high school did you attend and what sports did you play?

A: “I went to Birmingham Seaholm High School and I played baseball all four years.”

Q: How do you feel before a big game?

A: “I’m nervous, but I have learned to manage the nerves and actually get excited over them. And hopefully, I use that to my advantage.”

Q: How’s the team chemistry?

A: “Team chemistry this year is the best it’s ever been since I’ve been here. We’ve built it by just being around each other. We’ve been hanging out a lot outside of practice and I think the young coaching staff really helps. They help keep it really loose.”

Q: Do you have any pregame or postgame traditions?

A: “I typically listen to like one or two of my favorite songs before a game. I listen to “Bad Guy” by Eminem. That’s usually it.”

Q: When did you start playing?

A: “I started tee-ball when I was like four. I got into it because of my dad. He was a huge baseball advocate!”

Q: Have you overcome any adversity?

A: “Yeah! I’m actually known as “The Glass Man” because I’m injured almost every season. That definitely sucks. I always tell myself it’ll get better. I go through PT, and I have had some good trainers and good coaches in my life who help me.”

Q: What was the most challenging aspect of your sport you had to learn?

A: “I think it’s learning the fact that you can only control what you can control in baseball. It’s a really hard game. Losing your cool is very easy, and by staying composed, it makes all the difference.”

Q: Have you had a funny moment/most embarrassing moment on the field?

A: “When I started throwing sidearm, I was brand new to it… and I sucked at it! I threw four pitches in a row behind a batter. I don’t throw sidearm anymore.”

Q: Do you learn more from a win or a loss? Why?

A: “I can go with both, but I guess I’ll say a loss just because you learn about yourself and how you handle adversity. You also learn how your teammates handle it as well. It’s really important to figure out how as a team and as a whole you are going to handle your losses throughout the season and how to come back.”