Opinion: Dishonest administration endangers baseball players

Matt Risko, Staff Reporter

De Anza College’s administration clearly demonstrated that student safety is not its top priority by placing Erich Raich, head coach of our baseball team, on administrative leave for trying to keep his team safe by fixing their mistake.

When the team walked onto the field on February 24 for a game against Folsom Lake, they found that Robert Bothman’s construction company used clay for ceramic pots in the pitcher’s mound. This clay does not stay firm and sinks like mud, creating a serious injury risk.

De Anza’s administration did not allow the team to see the field during construction, or even after the field was finished. During this time, the construction company and administration told the team that they could not set foot on the field yet due to “the grass not properly taking root.”

I suspect that the school knew about the situation with the mound and told the team about the grass to buy time for it to harden.

The coaching staff decided to fix the mound themselves, knowing that if they reported the problem it would likely take several weeks for De Anza to fix. And because of this decision, the administration almost ended the career of head coach Erick Raich, who was reinstated on March 19.

The administration’s decision to put our head coach on leave for protecting his student athletes is unfair. They should have accepted the consequences of their dishonesty.

Editor’s note: Matt Risko is a pitcher for De Anza College’s baseball team.