DURHAM, N.C. - USA Baseball announced the coaching staff for the 2017 14U National Team Development Program (NTDP) on Tuesday. Former USA Baseball 15U National Team assistant coach Jason Maxwell will oversee the program as the field coordinator.
Maxwell will be joined on staff by Air Force Academy Head Coach, Mike Kazlausky, and East Carolina Head Coach, Cliff Godwin, who will serve as managers for the NTDP's Stars and Stripes teams.
The National Team Development Program offers athletes with an opportunity to connect with USA Baseball staff to better prepare for a future national team experience. The program includes skill development sessions, off-field education seminars and intrasquad Stars vs. Stripes games to assist in the development of the athletes as both a player and a person.
This year, the 14U NTDP also offers players the opportunity to compete for a roster spot on the 2017 15U National Team. Forty athletes will be invited to participate in the NTDP and 18 will then be selected to the 2017 15U National Team Trials roster.
The 14U NTDP will take place at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, North Carolina, from July 24-29, and the 15U National Team Trials will begin July 30.
Catching 101 founder, James "Xan" Barksdale, will join Concordia University Assistant Coach Steve Butler and Hoover High School (Hoover, Ala.) Head Coach, Adam Moseley, as catching, hitting and pitching coordinators for Maxwell, respectively.
Kazlausky will lead the program's Stripes team during the week. Scott Grove, the head coach of The First Academy (Orlando, Fla.), will serve as his assistant coach and Harvard-Westlake School (Los Angeles, Calif.) Head Coach, Jared Halpert, will lead the team's pitching staff.
Godwin will lead the Stars team in 2017, and David Houseton, Covenant Day School's (Matthews, N.C.) head coach, joins the staff as an assistant coach. Justin Bishop, an assistant coach at Parkview High School (Lilburn, Ga.) will be the team's pitching coach.
Players are identified and selected for the 14U National Team Development Program based on their participation and performance at USA Baseball sanctioned events including the USA Baseball National Team Championships in Arizona and Florida and the USA Baseball National Team Identification Series (NTIS).
Recommendations from professional scouts, USA Baseball scouts and collegiate, high school and youth coaches at USA Baseball events also play a role in the selection process for the National Team Development Program.
The full list of 2017 coaches and their bios is as follows:
Name, NTDP Position, Current Position
James "Xan" Barksdale, Catching Coordinator, Catching 101 Founder
Justin Bishop, Stars Pitching Coach, Parkview High School Assistant Coach
Steve Butler, Hitting Coordinator, Concordia University Assistant Coach
Cliff Godwin, Stars Manager, East Carolina University Head Coach
Scott Grove, Stripes Assistant Coach, The First Academy Head Coach
Jared Halpert, Stripes Pitching Coach, Harvard-Westlake Head Coach
David Houseton, Stars Assistant Coach, Covenant Day School Head Coach
Mike Kazlausky, Stars Manager, Air Force Academy Head Coach
Jason Maxwell, Field Coordinator, Ensworth High School Head Coach
Adam Moseley, Pitching Coordinator, Hoover High School Head Coach
James "Xan" Barksdale is the founder of Catching 101, a premier online source of information and resources for catchers. This is his second consecutive year serving as the catching coordinator for the 14U NTDP. In addition, he worked as the catching coach at the 2016 15U National Team Trials. He spent three years in the Atlanta Braves minor league system before starting his coaching career at University of Louisville where he coached until 2011. During his time there, the Cardinals won the Big East Championship in 2008, 2009 and 2010, and they went to the College World Series in 2007.
Justin Bishop is currently in his eighth season as an assistant coach at Parkview High School (Lilburn, Ga.), where he leads the team's pitching staff. Prior to his time with the Tigers, Bishop was the head coach at Berkmar High School (Lilburn, Ga.), Lithonia High School (Lithonia, Ga.) and Clarkston High School (Clarkston, Ga.) from 2001-2009. He started his coaching career as the pitching coach at LaGrange College in 2000. During his eight seasons at Parkview, the Tigers have won two national championships, three Georgia AAAAA State Championships and six consecutive Region 8-AAAAA Championships from 2010-2015. The team has also made two appearances in the USA Baseball National High School Invitational (NHSI) in 2012 and 2014.
Steve Butler joined the staff at Concordia University as an assistant coach in 2009, while continuing his professional playing career. He played six years of professional baseball before transitioning to coaching full time. Butler comes into the NTDP coaching position with three years of experience with USA Baseball, as he assisted at the 2012 and 2013 National Team Identification Series (NTIS), as well as serving as an assistant coach at the 2015 14U NTDP. In 2013, he also helped to evaluate players for the 15U and 18U National Teams, both of which went on to win gold medals at the COPABE 'AA' 15U Pan American Championships and the IBAF 'AAA'/18U World Cup, respectively.
Cliff Godwin completed his third year as the head coach at East Carolina University. During his three years leading the Pirates, Godwin has guided them to two NCAA Regional berths, one Super Regional appearance, an American Athletic Conference (AAC) Tournament title and a 110-73-1 record. Godwin was named the AAC Coach-of-the-Year after becoming the first coach in ECU history to win 40 games in his first season and guiding his team to a conference tournament title and an NCAA Regional appearance. In addition to his time at ECU, Godwin has served at six other Division I colleges, including as an assistant coach at Mississippi University, Louisiana State University, Notre Dame University and UNC Wilmington, and an associate head coach at University of Central Florida and Director of Baseball Operations at Vanderbilt University.
This year marks Scott Grove's fourth season as head coach at The First Academy and his 20th overall. In March 2017, Grove recorded his 400th career victory as a head coach. Before he started coaching, Grove spent six years playing professionally in the Atlanta Braves, Milwaukee Brewers and Toronto Blue Jays organizations. Grove was recognized as the 2010 National Coach of the Year, the 2000 and 2010 Florida Coach of the Year, and the 2010 and 2011 Metro Coach of the Year. Grove also led the Royals to the 2014 USA Baseball National High School Invitational title.
Jared Halpert was named the head coach at Harvard-Westlake School (Los Angeles, Calif.) in 2015, after serving on the staff since 2011. In his time coaching the team, he has helped guide the Wolverines to their first CIF-SS Division 1 Championship in 2013. In that year, the team was also named the 2013 National Champions and California State Team of the Year by Baseball America. Halpert also helped lead the program to back-to-back-to-back Mission League titles and national rankings in 2011, 2012 and 2013. Following that success, the team was invited to participate in the USA Baseball National High School Invitational in 2012 and 2013.
David Houseton is currently in his ninth season as the head coach at Covenant Day School (Matthews, N.C.). In his time with the Lions, he has led them to the NCISAA 3A state playoffs six times and has been named Coach of the Year by Matthews Mint Hill Weekly twice. Houseton also served as an assistant coach at Charlotte Christian High School for eight years where he helped lead the team to multiple state championships. In addition, he has experience with USA Baseball as part of the 13U NTIS Task Force.
2017 marks Mike Kazlausky's seventh year as the head coach at The Air Force Academy. In his first season with the program, he led the Falcons to 19 wins, which were the most wins by the program since 2002, as well as the second-most against Division I opponents and the most Division I wins by a first-year head coach in school history. In the years that followed, Kazlausky's teams have continued to improve and set records under his guidance. These include the lowest (2011) and second-lowest (2012) team ERAs in 30 years, a new school record .960 fielding percentage in 2011, the winningest conference season in over ten years in 2013, the best season in over a decade in 2014 and a school record for most Division I game wins in 2015 and 2016.
Jason Maxwell made his international coaching debut with USA Baseball in 2016 as an assistant coach for the 15U National Team. Prior to his time with the team, he served as a 15U National Team Trials coach in 2014 and 2015. Maxwell was named the first head coach in school history at Ensworth School (Nashville, Tenn.) and has led the program to eight straight playoff appearances and two Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association (TSSAA) quarterfinal appearances. Maxwell was drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the 1993 Major League Baseball Draft and played 12 years of professional baseball. He made his Major League debut with the Cubs in 1998.
Adam Moseley is the head coach at Hoover High School (Hoover, Ala.). Moseley led Hoover to an area championship in 2016 and finished the season with an overall record of 30-18. He then followed that up by guiding Hoover to the 7A Alabama State Championship in 2017. Before taking over at Hoover in 2014, Moseley led Grissom High School (Huntsville, Ala.) to the state quarterfinals in four of his final five seasons. Moseley has coached high school baseball for 11 seasons and has compiled an overall record of 325-195.