Coppell sophomore T.J. Pompey Jr. knows that the Cowboys’ baseball program is full of upperclassmen that are 100% dedicated to being the best players and teammates that they can be.
A huge component to becoming the best player that you can be is dedicating yourself to the weight room.
Pompey Jr. has certainly dedicated himself to becoming a gym rat.
During a time when novel coronavirus has altered the sports landscape, Pompey Jr. has been hard at work in the weight room this fall with his Cowboys’ teammates, working hard to fulfill his goal of becoming a collegiate baseball player.
The biggest step towards realizing his dreams became a reality Dec. 14 when Pompey Jr. announced his verbal commitment to play baseball for Texas Tech.
“I am excited to announce that I have verbally committed to @TTU_Baseball to continue my athletic and academic career,” Pompey Jr. wrote on his Twitter account. “I would like to thank my parents, brother, coaches, and friends for the support I’ve been given over the years in helping me reach this point.”
Pompey Jr. came into Coppell’s program as a talented freshman who had the ability to make an immediate impact with its varsity team. But, the Cowboys only got to watch a small sample of Pompey Jr.’s skills. The pandemic limited the Cowboys to 12 games before the remainder of the season was cancelled in April.
For the few opportunities that head coach Ryan Howard got to watch Pompey Jr. bat and play defense, Howard raved about Pompey Jr.’s skill level, saying that he is “highly advanced for his age, but importantly, his mental maturity and confidence is what has allowed him to compete against the best the state has to offer.”
Coppell’s schedule was loaded with games against state-ranked teams.
Through the Cowboys’ first 12 games, exactly half of those teams were ranked in the top 25 in the state in their respective classifications by Diamond Pro/Texas High School Baseball.
In game No. 2, it dropped a close 2-0 affair to 6A No. 5 McKinney Boyd. The next game was another 2-0 defeat, this time to 5A No. 9 Frisco Wakeland. Then a 5-1 loss to 6A No. 10 Prosper. Later, it fell to 6A No. 13 Spring Branch Memorial.
“TJ realized he needed to make a big jump in strength and has worked extremely hard all fall to become a more explosive athlete,” Howard said. “He has participated in our team weight room sessions three times a week and works on his own every evening.”
Next season, Howard said that Pompey Jr. is going to have an opportunity to win a starting spot in the infield and crack the starting rotation on the mound.
“Our coaching staff is excited to see him compete for his role in our lineup and see his hard work pay off,” Howard said.