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WESTERN GRAD, FORMER KENTUCKY WILDCAT MATT REIDA JOINS INDIANA UNIVERSITY BASEBALL COACHING STAFF

Matt Reida Warmup

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Indiana University head baseball coach Chris Lemonis has announced the addition of Western High School graduate Matt Reida as an assistant coach. A Russiaville, Ind., native, Reida brings four years of Division I playing experience as a middle infielder at the University of Kentucky. Reida will work with IU’s infielders, hitters and baserunners.

“We are excited to add Matt to our staff,” said Lemonis. “I have known Matt from his high school career and watched him throughout college. He is a self-made player who competed at a high level for a good college program. He was a tough competitor who you respected from the other dugout. Also, I was impressed about how eager Matt was to get back into the college game.”

Reida comes to Indiana following a stint as the director of player development and recruiting for CageRat Baseball in Colorado Springs, Colo. The organization worked with youth baseball players in the Midwest region, helping them obtain college scholarships and ultimately reaching their goals of playing professionally. Reida’s responsibilities included athlete and camp recruitment, managing player development, organizing team travel and hiring coaches and camp staff.

“I am very excited about joining the staff here at Indiana University,” said Reida. “Indiana baseball is a great program that has created a winning tradition. I consider myself very fortunate to have the opportunity to learn from Coach Lemonis, who has put together one of the best staffs in the country in Coach Cheesebrough and Coach Bunn.”

During his career at Kentucky (2011-14), Reida made 199 career starts at the shortstop position, tying him for fifth in Wildcat history. He ended his career playing in 214 games overall, placing him fourth all-time at UK. Reida was on the Brooks Wallace Shortstop of the Year Watch List and a three-time SEC Academic Honor Roll honoree.

Following his career at UK, Reida began his professional career with the River City Rascals in the Frontier League before joining the Tampa Bay Rays organization in 2014.

Reida completed his education with a B.A. in communications at UK in May 2014, graduating Magna Cum Laude with a 3.69 GPA. He has two siblings, brother Tad and sister Tiffany. Tad played baseball at Wichita State (2004-05) before joining the Hoosiers baseball program in 2006. He went on to earn his degree in Sport Management from IU in 2008. Tiffany was a basketball player at Indiana State and is fifth on the Howard County all-time scorer’s list with 1,465 points.

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Courtesy of Indiana University athletics

IU FOOTBALL FANS ENCOURAGED TO LEAVE EARLY, BE READY FOR CONSTRUCTION DELAYS AND LONGER DRIVE TIMES

Indiana Unversity Football

From the Indiana University Athletic Department

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Indiana University Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Fred Glass today announced several measures IU Athletics is taking to address gameday traffic disruptions caused by the ongoing construction along State Road 37. These measures include working with Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) and I-69 Developers; identifying alternative routes; enhanced communication; encouraging fans to leave early; working with local police; parking enhancements to help with traffic; and departure strategies.

Working with INDOT and I-69 Developers

In an effort to improve traffic flow, INDOT will extend green traffic lights along Indiana State Road 37 on game days.  INDOT and I-69 Development Partners will also work to limit lane restrictions on State Road 37 on gamedays. In addition, IU Athletics will provide improved signage upon arriving in Bloomington to assist fans traveling to and from the game.

IU Athletics staff has been meeting with I-69 officials throughout the summer to discuss the impact of State Road 37 construction on gameday traffic. As a result of collaboration between IU Athletics, I-69 Development Partners, and INDOT, there is a unified communications strategy to ensure that up-to-date and accurate information is being shared to fans and travelers by all three parties. Representatives from either INDOT and/or the I-69 Development Partners will attend all game day operations meetings with Indiana Athletics. They will also be present on football Saturdays to assist with traffic updates and communications, and I-69 Development Partners will provide an on-call representative to help troubleshoot traffic issues and provide important traffic information.

Identifying Alternative Routes

IU Athletics has also worked with INDOT to identify routes to Bloomington as alternatives to State Road 37 for persons coming to the games from Indianapolis and points north. Construction on State Road 37has significantly increased the time it takes to travel from Indianapolis. On a good day, it takes approximately one hour to drive from 465 and 37 to Memorial Stadium. Gameday traffic, as evidenced by the impact of Welcome Week traffic, could increase travel time significantly. While leaving early as discussed below, can substantially mitigate such delays, if you need to leave closer to game time INDOT recommends considering the following alternative routes.

  • State Highway 67 south to Spencer, then State Highway 46 east into Bloomington (estimated travel time for this route 1 hour and 20 from Indianapolis)
  • I-65 south toward Columbus to State Highway 46 west into Bloomington (even with construction on I-65, estimated travel time for this route 1 hour and 20 minutes from Indianapolis)
  • I-70 west towards 231-south and then State Highway 46 east into Bloomington (estimated travel time 1 hour and 45 minutes from Indianapolis)

IU Athletics staff personally travelled the proposed routes and requested assistance from INDOT to program lights along those routes on gamedays to improve traffic flow.

Enhanced Communication

Fans can opt in to the new text alert system by texting IUFB to 313131 to begin receiving alerts from IU Athletics.  Only pertinent information surrounding travel, traffic, weather and emergency situations will be shared on the new text system.

For live up-to-date traffic information on game day, fans can follow @OurIndiana on twitter or opt in to the text alert system as IU Athletics will post updates for travelers from those mediums as advised by all parties involved.

IU Athletics will also be posting updated travel information on IUHoosiers.com, issuing traffic related press releases throughout the year, and sending traffic updates via e-mail to all ticketholders.

Encouraging Fans to Leave Early!

Fans are encouraged to leave early to allow extra travel time to games.  Parking lots will be opened a minimum of five hours prior to kickoff time for each home contest.  For exact times of the opening of lots each week, follow @OurIndiana on twitter for that information. Early arriving fans are encouraged to enjoy live entertainment and food in the Hoosier Village, tailgate, or take advantage of the wide variety of restaurant and bar options in Bloomington before kickoff.

Working with Local Police

In another effort to help ease and maintain a more consistent traffic flow around the stadium, Indiana Athletics has worked with the IU Police Department to assign traffic officers to the same location throughout the entire season to keep the traffic pattern consistent each and every football game day. The football game day traffic pattern will be the same as in recent years and will go into effect a minimum of two hours prior to kickoff. Fans should be advised that Woodlawn Avenue, south of 17th Street is closed and under construction.

Parking Enhancements to Help with Traffic

Prepaid parking passes are available for purchase and are recommended to guarantee a parking spot within the athletic campus on football game days. There is also a $5 discount for prepaid passes.  Call the IU Athletics ticket office at 1-866-IUSPORTS to purchase a season or single game pass.

In order to ease and allow for several hundred more parking spaces for fans, Indiana Athletics staff and all game day personnel will park in lots outside of the athletics campus this season.

Police and staff will limit access to parking lots to those with appropriate credentials in order to avoid backups and delays associated with people in the wrong

In addition to the lots in and around the athletic campus, there are three parking garages on campus that are available to the public on football game days.  Those lots include:

  • Fee Lane Garage near Kelley School of Business
  • Poplars Garage, entrance on 6th Street between Grant and Dunn Streets
  • Henderson Garage, entrances from Indiana Avenue and/or S. Fess Avenue between 3rd Street and Atwater Avenue

Departure Strategies

Fans are encouraged to stay and enjoy postgame tailgating as lots remain open overnight. Fans should also consider the same alternative routes listed for their travels home after the game.

HOOSIER BOUND: KOKOMO’S MILLER SAYS YES TO OFFER FROM INDIANA

Fletcher Miller is shown in action during the 2013 IHSAA state championships. (File photo)

Fletcher Miller is shown in action during the 2013 IHSAA state championships. (File photo)

BY DEAN HOCKNEY

KOKOMO, Ind. – For the third time in two years, a Howard County student-athlete has signed a National Letter of Intent to continue a sports career in the Big Ten Conference at Indiana University. On the early national signing day, Kokomo High School multi-sport standout Fletcher Miller signed to wrestle for the Hoosiers next year, joining the Neeley twins from Eastern as IU athletes. But to get to Bloomington, Miller needed to grow up fast – literally.

“A lot of him being a smaller guy growing up has played into his success,” said Wildkat wrestling coach Ryan Wells of Miller, who wrestled at 140-pounds as a freshman. “He learned how to wrestle like a smaller guy. Now he wrestles in the higher weight classes and a lot of those guys don’t move like he does. He still wrestles and gets in on legs like a smaller wrestler does, and those guys don’t know how to react to it. He moves so incredibly well, and I think that is a large part of his success.”

Miller said he agreed with his coach’s assessment.

“I was a little guy growing up,” he said. “It did help my wrestling. A lot of bigger guys are just strong, but I learned to wrestle like a little guy; learning to turn into them. Yes, it helped.”

Like most athletes who accept scholarships to Division I programs, Miller receiving an offer from IU is a dream come true. While he might not have been an early bloomer size wise, his current 6-2, 220-pound stature allowed him to finish as the IHSAA state runner-up at 220-pounds last year while cruising through the regular season undefeated. He is the first Wildkat to sign with a Big Ten school since Dondre Johnson danced on the Purdue gridiron in 1996.

“This is something I never could have imagined doing even a year ago,” said Miller, who has a varsity record of 141-13 as of Nov. 25. He is on pace to break the schools all-time win record of 163 in January. “I was just hoping to go somewhere, and it really came together for me this summer. It will be an amazing experience. I am on cloud nine. It doesn’t get any better than this.”

With 141-plus wins at Kokomo and a state runner-up finish, Miller is one of the best to ever come out of the program. In his first three seasons, Miller is a two-time North Central Conference champion, three-time sectional champ, two-time regional winner and last year earned his first semi-state title. And last summer, he earned All-American status in freestyle from USA Wrestling. He currently is ranked No. 11 in the nation at 220-pounds, but he said he may wrestle as a heavyweight at IU.

But as good as Miller is on the football field and wrestling mats, he might be an even better person away from athletics. Wells said his star pupil is a young man that all student-athletes at Kokomo should try and model themselves after.

“He is the epitome of a student-athlete; he does all the right things,” said Wells. “He is exactly the right kid who we want representing our school – he goes to church every Sunday, does community service, gets straight A’s, and he is student body class president. He is just a nice kid to have around. Being a great wrestler is not his best attribute; being an awesome young man is. I can’t say enough good things about him.”

Miller credits a good work ethic and strong family values for his activities outside of athletics. He also said it takes a lot of time and hard work to maintain solid grades while playing sports. How much time?

“A lot more than anyone sees,” said Miller, a member of the Academic All-NCC squad. “It is non-stop all the time – whether it is church or school or wrestling. It is pretty busy, but I love it.”

Last February, Miller entered the IHSAA 220-pound state championship match with a perfect 50-0 record. His win streak was snapped by Gelen Robinson (49-0) of Lake Central, who took a 7-2 decision victory over the Wildkat. Both have now signed to play at a Big Ten school; Robinson will hit the gridiron at Purdue next fall. As they both begin their final high school campaigns, Miller wants nothing more than a rematch with his mat rival.

“The goal is obviously to get the state championship I missed out on last year,” said Miller. “I definitely want to see Glen again. I hope he wrestles 220 again because I want another crack at it. “

And once he accomplishes his prep career – which will hopefully end on the top step of the Bankers Life Fieldhouse podium – Miller will look towards the next four years in Bloomington.

“The intensity level will pick up a lot,” he said. “Much like the transition from middle school to high school, it is going to be a big transition from high school to college. I am ready for it, but it will be an adjustment. Hopefully, I will make an impact. The current heavyweight is a senior, so I hope to be able to step in.”

But before he roams the grounds of Indiana University, Miller has his eyes set on a superior senior season. He just finished leading the Kats to an NCC runner-up finish in football, now he wants to lead them to the top of the conference – and a date in Indianapolis next February.