Since returning to the MEAC in October 2014, Head Coach Amber Jackson has been making a statement as a first time head coach. In her first season, the Hornets had a program best 14 game win streak and secured its second straight MEAC North Division Title. In 2016, the Hornets tied that win streak and added on a third consecutive Northern MEAC Title. DSU also lead the MEAC in batting average, slugging percentage, runs, hits, RBI’s, double, home runs, and total bases. Jackson also finished off the season as MEAC Coach of the Year.
However, there is more to Coach Jackson than softball, awards, and stats. Her players describe her as dedicated, loyal, competitive, honest, passionate, and driven. Her coaching staff would say she is caring, invested, and motivated. Her assistant said, “She’s more than my co-worker, she’s my teammate. More importantly she’s my friend and mentor.”
Coach Jackson cares deeply for her players. She treats them as more than athletes. She cares for them on an academic and personal level. Monthly they meet to talk about the player’s goals on the field, in the classroom, and in their lives.
She truly touches her player’s lives. Alumni Kili Mathews-Blue sent in a quote saying what it meant to her that Coach Jackson attended her wedding.
“It was so special because it showed that she cared about me outside of school and softball. She cared about my life and what was going on in it. That was one of the biggest and best days of my life and it meant a lot to have my coach there. She actually flew back the morning of my wedding from recruiting just to be there!”
Coach Jackson doesn’t just extend this caring nature to her current and former players; it’s who she is all around and all the time. When asking freshman Desiree Moreno what it was like to be recruited by Coach Jackson, this is what she had to say:
“Being recruited by Coach Jackson was like a dream come true. I knew from the start that I’d be making the right decision in committing to Del State. Having such a talented former softball star interested in me was such an honor. She was so caring and dedicated. There was no doubt in my mind that I would feel comfortable with her as my coach.”
We gave Coach Jackson the opportunity to sit down and answer some questions so our viewers had to opportunity to get to know her a little better. Some were softball related, some a little less serious.
What are you looking forward to most this season?
Game ONE. Two reasons. One, its the freshmen's first game. They worked so hard throughout the recruiting process and have been longing for the day that they get to step on the field and represent DSU. That time has come for them and I get excited for that every year. Its one of my most memorable experiences in life, the first game of your college career. The second reason, in game one I learn a lot about our team, how we are doing, what we are capable of, where we need to grow and so much more.
What is the number one characteristic you look for in recruits?
I look for athletes who are going to fit into the culture we are trying to create. I want athletes who want to build the program and create a legacy here at Delaware State University. Athletes who are willing to get uncomfortable in order to discover the strength and courage it takes to fight through the adversity on and off the field,
What is your favorite thing about the MEAC conference?
Heart- The will and the fight the teams have.
What is your favorite dugout snack?
Tootsies rolls (absolute favorite), bubble gum, starburst, skittles the purple pack, snickers, pretty much anything I can chew on.
What hobbies do you have?
I like cooking, baking, watching superhero movies, country line dancing, and going to sit on the beach at sunrise or sunset
East Coast or West Coast and why?
I prefer west coast food (Mexican food), but east coast scenery (trees, beaches and seasons).
What is your dream vacation?
Any place that has an awesome view of the ocean and good food count me in. But to be honest my favorite vacations from life have been the mission trips I've taken.
As a player what song or songs pumped you up?
Michael Jackson - Don't Stop Till You Get Enough
What is your favorite food to cook or bake?
Favorite TV Show Ever?
I Love Lucy and Dick Van Dyke
We hope you enjoyed this more in depth look into the leader of the DSU Hornet Softball Team. She loves her athletes and she loves the game she coaches. The Hornet Softball program is so grateful to have her here. Continue to follow us every week for a new blog right here at http://dsusoftball.blogspot.com/