Al Eckmann Returns as Packers Head Coach

Updated: 08/24/2014 10:43 PM
Created: 08/24/2014 7:39 PM
By: Caleb Ostrander

(ABC 6 Sports) -- "I didn't even know there was a resignation at Austin high school," Al Eckmann said. "Later, I was out watching the (section) tournament games they host, and some people said, 'Why don't you apply?' Apply for what? I didn't know what I was supposed to apply for."

Eckmann didn't really need to apply for anything.

His credentials speak for themselves, so it was a no-brainer when the Packers announced Eckmann would return for his third stint as Austin head coach.

"I still love coaching softball. I love teaching the game and working with the kids, and it just seems like a perfect fit again," Eckmann said. "I'm not too old to get it done, I hope."

Eckmann is an old name around southern Minnesota.

He coached the Packers to three state titles in the 1980s, and is a member of the Minnesota Coaches Hall of Fame.

"I've had a lot of phone calls from people, saying, 'Thanks for doing this,'" Eckmann said. "I got a letter from a girl in New York, and a letter from a guy out in California, so it's been positive."

Eckmann also thinks the future of the Austin program is bright.

"After I got a little interest in (the job), I went and watched the 16-U team play, and it looks to me like there's some pretty good talent there. They've really got some speed, which I like."

At this point, Eckmann's wife Jan has to think she'll never get her husband away from the softball field.

"We really loved that we had a great time with the first stint at Austin high, and she's just a great supporter," Eckmann said. "I can't say enough good things about her."