PREP BASEBALL: IT MUST BE IN THE GENES
Cabrillo High School is chalking its new baseball diamond with some true blood lines, naming Cole Osborne to succeed his father, Jonathan, as the Conquistadores’ head varsity coach.
“We’re pretty excited about it,” said outgoing athletic director Dan Troup. “He has quite some pedigree … comes from really good stock.”
Osborne, who graduated from Cabrillo in 2013, is also the grandson of John Osborne, a Santa Barbara High and UCSB Hall of Famer who had the baseball diamond at Hancock College named after him after his 31 years as the Bulldogs’ coach.
“It’s definitely a dream come true, and I am truly blessed,” Cole said. “I’m excited to get out there and start working, and hopefully put a few more accolades to the Osborne name.”
He previously served as Cabrillo’s freshman baseball coach, and then assisted his father with the varsity, before moving with his wife, Blaire, to Irvine last year.
“I only took a year off from coaching here, so I know a good amount of the athletes,” Osborne said.
He opted to move back to the Central Coast after the birth of his first child, Dax Willard Osborne, on Feb. 20. He accepted a job as an instructional assistant in special education at Cabrillo and is currently working on his teaching credential.
His was the final hire of Troup, who is stepping down after nine years as Cabrillo’s A.D. and 34 years in the school district.
“He’s got a tremendous attitude and great demeanor,” Troup said of Osborne. “He’s very level-headed, very even-keeled, and he’s got a ton of baseball knowledge.
“He knows how the game should be played. He’s worked with a lot of our kids in the past and did just a super job. He has a great rapport with them.”
Osborne got his start as a bat boy for his father, who coached the baseball team at Cabrillo since 1994. Cole later played infield for the Conquistadores.
“When I get around my dad and my grandpa, and we’re talking baseball, there are a lot of similarities between us,” Cole began. “But generationally, we’ve all adapted to what the coaching style was at the time.
“The foundation of my baseball knowledge comes from them, but I do have to be myself, and coach my own style.”
Cabrillo renovated both the varsity baseball and softball complexes this year, installing new sod, dirt, and fencing.
“It’s a real nice facelift,” Troup said. “There’s still a lot of work to do – I could show you a list that’s as long as my arm – but we did check off a few of the items.”
The Conquistadores also moved up this year into the Channel League, where it now plays against several larger schools, including his grandfather’s alma mater.
“I love competition and so it’s going to be fun to go out there and work with the guys and get them ready for the Channel League,” Osborne said. “I didn’t realize until just recently the deep family roots that I have in Santa Barbara, so it’s cool that I’m going to be there a lot more, and seeing where my grandpa played, and discovering the different things my family has done.”