A New Coach Gasso Leads An Oklahoma Softball Team

A New Coach Gasso Leads An Oklahoma Softball Team

After 40 years of helping his wife, Patty Gasso, win championships with the University of Oklahoma softball team, Jim Gasso is taking on coaching a team of his own. 

When a friend called to tell him that the Mid-America Christian University softball head coach was retiring, he said he jumped on the opportunity. 

"He says to me, ‘Hey, do you know anybody that might be interested?’ Immediately, I mean, I didn't even waste it a half a second, I said, ‘yeah I sure do,’” Gasso said. “Me.” 

The response was initially met with laughter, but when Gasso made it clear, he wasn't joking. He emerged as the top candidate.

He said he tried to give his wife a heads up, but Patty said the whole thing happened quickly. 

“He got offered the position, and he told me about it. He's like, ‘I want to take it.’ I'm like, ‘Wait, what? Wait a minute. I didn't even know you were looking into this.’” Patty said. 

Gasso said the reason he took the job was simple. 

So he could coach at a collegiate level, help shape the lives of young women, and openly share the gospel. 

When he was building the staff, his first call went to a former OU softball player, Keilani Ricketts. 

“It was a no-brainer for me,” Gasso said. 

Ricketts said Gasso called her within days of getting the job. 

“He asked me if I was open to the opportunity to be his assistant coach, and he had told me that I would still be able to live here in Norman, I would be able to still play pro softball and just kind of help them out,” Ricketts said.

Gasso said he hopes to emulate his wife’s success, but not necessarily her coaching style. 

Patty said her husband has a much bigger personality than she does. 

“He is very, very energetic, just constant, constant push and encouragement,” Patty said. 

Ricketts said all the girls on the team would agree. 

“At 5:45 in the morning, he has the same amount of energy as he does at 5:45 p.m.,” said Ricketts. 

Gasso’s intense coaching is matched with an equal amount of love for his players, and he said he is grateful for answered prayer.