In the four-game series this weekend vs. Illinois, Ohio State is celebrating 125 years of Ohio State baseball that will feature two legendary coaches being honored for their accomplishments.
Marty Karow, Ohio State skipper from 1951 until 1976, led the Buckeyes to four College World Series, winning the national title in 1966. He will have his jersey – No. 13 – officially retired by the athletics department in a ceremony between doubleheader games Saturday.
Bob Todd, the winningest coach in Ohio State history with more than 800 wins in his 21 seasons as Ohio State coach, will be honored before the Friday game on his induction into the American Baseball Coaches Hall of Fame (which will officially take place in January at the ABCA Convention).
Karow, who won a then-record 479 Ohio State games, will be only the third individual to have his jersey retired. Fred Taylor, Ohio State’s first baseball All-American, had his No. 27 retired in 2003. Steve Arlin, the great Ohio State pitcher who led the Buckeyes to back-to-back College World Series and to the 1966 CWS championship, had his jersey No. 22 retired in 2005. Karow’s jersey will be retired 33 years to the date of his last home game as coach: a 1-0 win over Michigan May 10, 1975. He passed away in 1986, three months shy of his 82nd birthday.
Todd, who has 947 career victories in this, his 25th season as a collegiate head coach, has guided Ohio State to six of its 14 Big Ten Conference championships and he has also led the team to a Big Ten record eight Big Ten tournament titles. In addition, he has led the team into 12 NCAA tournaments. Todd has done more than win championships at Ohio State , though. He was the driving force behind the fund raising efforts and the building of the majestic Bill Davis Stadium.
“The Ohio State Department of Athletics is thrilled to honor the legacy of Marty Karow by retiring his jersey,” Gene Smith, Director of Athletics, said, “and we are most proud of the lasting achievements of coach Bob Todd that have enabled him to attain the highest coaching honor possible: being enshrined into the American Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame.”
The Illinois weekend will also be an opportunity to celebrate the current student-athletes as well as the past accomplishments of those before them. Among the efforts planned for the weekend:
Ohio State ’s baseball captains – 151 different individuals have served as captain over the years including this year’s captains, Dan DeLucia and Justin Miller – will have their annual captain’s breakfast Sunday morning.
This year’s four seniors – Dan DeLucia, Tony Kennedy, Chris Macke and Rory Meister – will be honored on the field prior to the 1:05 p.m. Sunday game.
In conjunction with the Diamond Club, the baseball program’s booster organization, a BBQ picnic will take place on Saturday and will be open to the public for a minimal charge with all proceeds benefiting the baseball program. For more information about joining the Buckeye Diamond Club, email BuckeyeDiamondClub@hotmail.com.
A display of past Ohio State baseball trophies, including Big Ten Conference championship trophies and the 1966 College World Series trophy, will be assembled at Bill Davis Stadium throughout the weekend.