Ledbetter Inducted Into Hall of Fame
Long time Snead State Baseball Coach Gerry Ledbetter was recently inducted into the Alabama Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame.
The banquet was held at the 21st Annual ALABCA Hall of Fame presentation on January 22 at the Birmingham Jefferson Civic Center.
“It’s an honor to be recognized but the real honor lies in being able to coach such an incredible group of young men we have in our program year after year,” said Coach Ledbetter.
“I must thank our President, Dr. (Robert) Exley, and our Athletic Director, Mark Richard, for the opportunity they have given me to do what I love and for providing us with the resources we need to run a top-notch program.”
Coach Ledbetter is in his 24th season as the Parsons leader.
“Coach Ledbetter is one of the most amazing coaches with whom I have been acquainted. His approach to his student-athletes is outstanding. He has a positive and disciplined attitude while working with players from all backgrounds,” said Snead State President Dr. Robert Exley.
“He possesses the most important trait found in all great coaches – he somehow finds ways to bring out the best in each player. He creates an atmosphere of motivation, teamwork and energy. He genuinely cares about the success of each player and develops close relationships with them that persist long after graduation.”
Coach Ledbetter graduated from Boaz High School in 1965. He is a 1969 graduate of Jacksonville State University with a bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education.
During his high school career, Gerry played football, baseball, and basketball for the Pirates. He signed a baseball scholarship to Jacksonville State University. At JSU, Gerry was one of two Gamecock players to be named to the NAIA Little All-American Team. As a center-fielder, the Gamecocks advanced to the Alabama Collegiate Conference Tournament three times. All three years, Gerry was named to the All-Alabama Collegiate Conference Team. In his Little All-American year, he excelled on defense in centerfield and batted .406 for the season. He hit .320 or better each of the four years he played at JSU, a record.
Upon graduation, Gerry taught and coached at Sardis High School. He coached football, baseball, basketball, and track for two years before moving to Cleburne County High School for one year, where he coached football, basketball, and baseball. Desiring to move back closer to his roots, he took a teaching/coaching job at Douglas High School in 1972 and coached there until 1992. His DHS Varsity Boys Basketball team won the Area Tournament four years and finished in the finals three additional years. He also coached football and initiated a new varsity baseball program while at DHS.
In 1992, Gerry became head baseball coach at Snead State. During his tenure at Snead, he has had 11 players sign professional contracts and over 175 players sign four-year scholarships.
“Coach Ledbetter and I have spent the last 14 seasons together. I had the opportunity to play for him and have served beside him as an assistant coach ever since. Not only can I speak to the way Coach Ledbetter treats his players but his assistant coaches as well. He has always treated everyone with great respect. He is a great leader to both is players and assistants. He has been an outstanding role model and mentor to me,” said Associate Head Coach Casey Underwood.
He has been involved in sports camps and numerous community service activities as the leader of the Parsons. He was inducted into the Marshall County Sports Hall of Fame in 2010.
“Coach Ledbetter is a highly respected individual in the community and at the College. He is a man of great character that serves as an excellent role model to everyone he is around. He’s had an impact on thousands of young men,” said Snead State Athletic Director Mark Richard.
“We implemented a new direction in our athletics department five years ago that emphasized graduation rates, cost cutting, fundraising and much stricter recruiting rules. Coach Ledbetter has been a vocal supporter of the new direction and even implemented higher goals for the baseball team.”
He is married to his wife, Carolyn. They have two sons, Stephen and Luke, and one daughter-in-law, Misty. They have one grandson, Dalton. Gerry attends First Baptist Church in Boaz.
Veteran Snead State Baseball Coach Gerry Ledbetter, middle, was recently inducted into the Alabama Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame.
He is pictured here with Assistant Coach Jerry Wayne Hallmark, left, and Associate Head Coach Casey Underwood, right.