SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) — “People say I picked the worst year ever to play college football. But I don’t look at it that way because I had a pretty good experience.”
After his senior season at Sergeant Bluff-Luton, Daniel Wright was ready to continue his football career 90 miles up the road at Sioux Falls, until Wisconsin came calling just days before signing day.
“Being a quarterback in the Big Ten was really intriguing for me, and I wanted to give it a shot,” said Wright. “I wanted to play at the highest level.”
Daniel walked on with the Badgers after graduation, but after one season in Madison, decided to move on. But he wasn’t just switching schools, but sports as well, trading in the gridiron for the diamond.
“It just kind of boiled down to I think I had a better shot in baseball. I credit the Wisconsin strength staff. I put on a lot of good weight, and really kind of transformed my body while I was there. And that was kind of one of the reasons why I thought baseball could be a realistic thing for me because I felt that I had put together a much better body to throw the ball harder. And I knew with the right coaching I could channel that.”
Daniel found his opportunity at Iowa Western and is set to play with the Reivers this spring. But after a year away from the game, is having to get back into pitching form.
“Obviously there’s a learning curve there. I think it’s been really fun. There’s been a lot of things for me to learn. There’s really a lot more to pitching than I ever realized. And I think that’s something that’s been cool for me to continue to learn and grow.”
And it appears Daniel is a quick study. Just months after his arrival in Council Bluffs, the SB-L alum found his new home, committing to play at Division I Houston following his lone year at Iowa Western.
“Coach Rardin at Iowa Western is very well connected. He’s one of the best in the business at the junior college level at being able to place guys around the country. I’m sure he played a great part in getting me there. The Houston coaches, they must have seen me somewhere along the way, and liked what they saw.”
But it’s not about being DI, or necessarily about his numbers. For Wright, his move to baseball is about finding his passion outside the box score.
“Being in different locker rooms and different dynamics is something that I really enjoy. And yeah, I really missed the competitive aspect a little bit. I think that definitely played a part in my decision to leave was, I want to go compete, and I want to be a guy somewhere if that makes sense. And so going to baseball, being a guy in the rotation, or being a dominant arm out of the bullpen was something that really intrigued me, because I enjoy being counted on by my teammates, and I’m looking forward to that feeling again.