By Paul Casey Gotham
Dudley “Skip” Bailey will be among those inducted when the National Junior College Athletic Association presents its 2011 Baseball Hall of Fame class.
Elected by the NJCAA Baseball Coaches Association, Bailey, the current Director of Athletics at Monroe Community College and former head and assistant coach and player, will be inducted during this year’s NJCAA Division I World Series.
In twelve seasons at the helm, Bailey’s teams compiled a record of 451-204 winning six Region III championships. His 2007 team advanced to the NJCAA Division II World Series earning him East District Coach of the Year to go with five Region III Coach of the Year awards (1998, 2000, 2002, 2006, 2007).
Bailey started at MCC in 1975 as a shortstop for the legendary coach, Dave Chamberlain. He was eventually elected captain of of the 1976 MCC squad – Chamberlain’s first Tribune team to advance to the World Series.
Bailey will join Chamberlain in the NJCAA Hall-of-Fame.
“I’m really proud of him,” Chamberlain said. “It’s quite an accomplishment. He might be the only guy in the hall who played in a World Series and also served as an assistant.”
Bailey went on to the University of Colorado where he was also named team captain and eventually earned All-Big Eight honors in 1978. He returned to MCC and served as an assistant under Chamberlain for 17 years before taking over as head coach.
Reflecting on his career Bailey noted: “We’ve had a lot of good players and coaches through the years. They have a share in this award. The assistant coaches that worked while I was the head are as responsible as I am. Nothing would have happened without them.”
Long-time assistant, Pete Dawes talked about Bailey’s influence on the program.
“He wanted his teams prepared,” Dawes commented. “He had a plan to get as many games as possible.”
That plan included the Tribunes increasing their number of games against schools in the south. Under Bailey, the Tribs regularly made a trip that included a stop in Maryland before heading to Florida and returning to Maryland. MCC frequently played 14 games in 10 days. The experience earned him the nickname of “Bingo” Bailey – the traveling road coach.
“His goal was to get back to the World Series, and we accomplished that in 2007,” continued Dawes who served as an assistant in the MCC program for 26 years – 12 of those under Bailey. “Our kids were well-prepared because of him.”
Along with Bailey, former New Mexico Junior College head coach Ray Birmingham, Jr. and current head coach Tom Frizzell, Sr. of Massasoit Community College (Mass.) make-up the 2011 class. Longtime NJCAA Division I World Series Tournament Chair and volunteer Jamie Hamilton of Grand Junction, Colorado will also join the group.
“He definitely continued the success and tradition established by Coach Chamberlain,” added current Tribunes head coach, Mike Kelly who played for and served as an assistant under Bailey. “He’s the reason why I am here.”
Currently, Bailey is NJCAA Region III Men’s Assistant Director and chairs the NJCAA Division III baseball committee. In addition, he is the President of the Western New York Athletic Conference and chair of the NJCAA Swimming & Diving committee.
“He’s very involved,” Chamberlain continued. “The best is yet to come.”
The induction ceremony will take place in Grand Junction, Colorado.