One on One: College World Series President Jack Diesing Jr. Transitions to New Venue
For 60 years, Rosenblatt Stadium in Omaha, Neb., has served as home of the College World Series. As the NCAA’s best baseball teams gather again this month to determine a national champion, work continues on a downtown stadium that will, beginning in 2011, replace the beloved “Blatt.” As president of College World Series of Omaha Inc., an all-volunteer nonprofit organizing committee founded by his father in 1967, Jack Diesing Jr. has since taking the helm in 1989 seen several five-year contracts with the NCAA renewed, about as many renovations to Rosenblatt completed and his city’s identity as host to what he calls “the second-best championship” in all of college sports solidified. In recent years, he’s had to address fears among members of a “Save Rosenblatt” movement who feel playing the CWS on any other diamond will somehow cause the tournament to lose its sparkle. Paul Steinbach asked Diesing about the transition.
Q: How hard will it be to see Rosenblatt retired?
Q: Last year, you signed a 25-year deal with the NCAA to keep the CWS in Omaha through 2035. Would that have been possible without a new stadium?
Q: Are you confident any remaining doubters will be converted once they experience the new venue?
Q: What single memory stands out from all the years at Rosenblatt?
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Ithaca College Athletics and Events Center