By Montaous Walton
Growing up in inner-city Milwaukee, I went to church and stayed out of trouble, and I carried my glove and ball everywhere I went. I had dreams like every other kid in my neighborhood. I witnessed violence and poverty, even peers getting killed and some in prison, but I kept my baseball glove close, practicing every chance I got to get away from the bad things. I got on my knees and prayed every night, asking the Lord to keep me and my family safe.
As time passed, I played four years of high-school baseball. Even though I was not the greatest or most talented player, I developed a strong work ethic and a high baseball IQ. I never really played college baseball but attended camps and summer combines, networking with players, coaches and scouts.
In my 20s I became lost, naive, stubborn, immature, dishonest and egotistical. I stayed out all night and was surrounded by “yes men” who never meant me any good. I had a sports advisor who represented me for a while, and I provided him with inaccurate information that led to me being arrested for misrepresentation.
I was thrown into custody for a week in a dirty cell with bugs crawling around. That’s where I heard a voice, the Lord Jesus’ voice, asking, “Can you hear Me now?” At that moment I dropped to my knees and cried out to God, lifting my hands and praising Him, asking for His forgiveness and confessing all my sins to Him. From that day forward I gave my life to Jesus Christ. Instead of doing things my way, I allowed Him to be in the driver’s seat.
A few years later, I asked God what He wanted me to do, and shortly afterward I had coaching on my heart. I attended coaching clinics and told myself while looking in the mirror, my focus is on teaching life lessons while leading young men on the right path and making sure they put the Lord first. Today I am proud of the God-fearing man I have become.
In recent years I’ve been successful coaching and recruiting at Cincinnati Christian University; Central Christian College of McPherson, Kansas; Wright State University Lake Campus in Ohio; Rust College in Holly Springs, Mississippi; and then I got the job at Mississippi Valley State University as director of baseball operations under Coach CJ Bilbrey. Recently I have been gaining interest from other schools in the South and Midwest.
God has been amazing. I have accomplished a lot in my coaching career so far and plan to accomplish more. I also hope to become a husband, father and family man and make sure my future child or children grow up to become great and positive people.
A native of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Montaous Walton is the former baseball operations director at Mississippi Valley State University. His previous baseball career also includes serving as assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Rust College in Holly Springs, Wright State University Lake Campus, Central Christian College of Kansas, and Cincinnati Christian University. He currently lives in Orangeburg, South Carolina.