#TeamworksFamily Feature: South Alabama's Andrew Carden

Andrew CardenDirector of Baseball OperationsUniversity of South AlabamaWarm-upFavorite movie: Major League.Favorite food: Pizza.Childhood idols: Jim Edmonds, Mark McGwire and Jose Canseco.Favorite non-sports hobby: Exercising/running.Best Superstition: A former player wanted no contact with anyone the whole day before he pitched.Which experience in your life has had the biggest impact on the person you are today?I lost my grandfather and father in back to back years when I was 11 and 12 years old. My brother and I went to live with my grandmother, and my aunts and uncles became like immediate family. That was definitely life changing. My immediate family grew larger. It made my family, that was already close, much closer. I have two sets of aunts and uncles that are like parents to me. While at the time it was heartbreaking, a lot of good things came from it.What challenges do you face in DI that you didn’t face at smaller schools?I’ve been at an NAIA school and a junior college before South Alabama. This is my first experience at an NCAA school. The main difference with Division I is that it’s a lot more regulated, and there are a lot more rules. Staying up to date on those rules is challenging. At my previous two schools, there was more leniency on the rules.What are the keys to success at the DI level?Organization is a real key for me personally and for the team as a whole. Communication is also very important. That’s why Teamworks is so beneficial. Communication between coaches and players is essential. It ensures that everyone is on the same page and knows what’s going on.What’s something you know now, that you wish you would have known when you first started?I wish I would’ve known the amount of time, effort and organization that goes into recruiting. When I was at a junior college, I did a lot of the recruiting. Junior college recruiting is different than Division I, and I have learned so much about it from our coaching staff here. Our coaches work long hours and are on the road constantly.How have lessons you’ve learned from baseball influenced other aspects of your life?The biggest lesson I’ve learned from baseball that I apply to my life is that every day is a new day. I try to be the same person and be consistent. If you are consistent in baseball throughout the season, you’re going to be ok. You may have a bad night, it happens, but the good thing about baseball is most of the time you have the next day. That’s why it’s important to try to be the same person, consistently, every day.

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