Spartanburg Day School is pleased to announce that Travis Dawkins has been appointed as varsity baseball coach for the Griffins. Dawkins will also be assisting within the athletics department and with PE classes beginning this fall.
Dawkins is highly accomplished, bringing a wealth of knowledge from his career as a player on six Major League Baseball teams, as a coach for the Cincinnati Reds, and now, as the owner of a local youth baseball program.
“From the outset, Coach Dawkins talked about what baseball can do for a student’s character,” said Head of School Dave Skeen. “He linked the lessons learned on the baseball field to a life well lived. For us at Spartanburg Day School, this was the most attractive part of this new partnership – hiring a teacher-coach who will offer a high caliber athletic experience as a part and parcel with our values of excellence, leadership and passion.”
In 1997, Dawkins was drafted from Newberry High School by the Reds in the second round of the draft. He has more than 23 years of experience in professional baseball – 15 spent as a player and eight as a coach and manager. In addition to the Reds, Dawkins played for the Seattle Mariners, Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago White Sox, Kansas City Royals and Charlotte Knights. In 1999, he was a silver medalist in the Pan-American Games, and in 2000 won an Olympic Gold medal while playing for the U.S. baseball team. Currently, Dawkins is owner and instructor at Carolina Wheelhouse Academy in Gaffney, a youth baseball training, skills and instruction program.
“I am grateful to have this opportunity to lead the Spartanburg Day School baseball program,” Dawkins said. “Having been a part of several high caliber professional teams during my playing and coaching career, I know we have the potential to achieve that level of greatness here as well. We will be a hard-working program in pursuit of excellence with a culture changing, winning mindset.”
Interim Athletic Director Mike Cerino said Dawkins’s experience and expertise will be a true asset to the athletics program at SDS.
“Coach Dawkins’s resume speaks for itself, and we couldn’t be more excited about the energy he will bring to Griffin Baseball,” Cerino said. “His passion for not only baseball but for coaching and inspiring students to achieve their personal bests, on and off the field, is abundantly clear. I’m certain he will be a tremendous addition to our program.”