Meet James Nygren

May 13, 2010

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Oregon State grabbed James Nygren’s attention with their back-to-back National Championship titles in baseball. Nygren made his transition from Henley High School to Oregon State when he joined Beaver Nation in the summer of 2009 for the Corvallis Knights. His positive attitude and passion for sports, makes for a great addition to Beaver Baseball.
How did you get into baseball?
“I started playing baseball when I was really young and when I was 6 years old I started playing organized baseball. I love the game and its competitive nature.”
When did Oregon State start recruiting you?
“Oregon State recruited me when I was a freshman at a junior college, Western Nevada.”
What made you choose Oregon State, what stood out to you?
“Oregon State was and is the place to play especially if you’re from Oregon. They had just won back-to-back national championships and I wanted to come to Oregon State and play for another one.  I also had a great time on my visit on the campus and met some great coaches.”
What was your first impression of Oregon State and how has that changed since you've been here?
“Oregon State has tremendous fan support and Beaver Nation holds strong wherever we play. I was impressed with the competitive culture and how connected the community is. Neither of those things has changed since I have been here and I do not see it ever changing.”
What is it like to work with Coach Casey?
“Coach Casey is a very competitive coach and will get his players to compete every time we get on the field. I have learned a lot from Coach Casey on the field, but also off. In the three years that I have been here I feel that I have made some tremendous strides in maturing as a student-athlete and as a person.”
Is there a particular role model/idol you look up to?
“I am amazed by what Mariano (Rivera) has been able to accomplish in the game of baseball. His work ethic and commitment to the game and his plan is unmatched. I think those things have helped him become the champion he is and I try to model some of my behaviors after his.”
Do you have any pre-game rituals and, if so, what are they? Favorite meal, or a song you listen to?
“Before the games I like to listen to rock and one song that helps me get amped for a game is, I Will Not Bow by Breaking Benjamin. I usually always have a Subway sandwich before a game and my favorite is their Chicken Teriyaki.”
If you didn't play baseball, is there any other sport you'd want to play?
“Growing up I played baseball and basketball ever since I can remember. I love the game of basketball and when I can I try to play a pickup game here or there.”
How important are academics to you?
“Academics have transitioned into being an important part of my life. I have realized that baseball may not be there forever and in this day and age jobs are hard to come by. I want to insure myself with multiple opportunities to have a great and satisfying job and I know that taking academics seriously is key to that goal.”
How do you balance your time as a student-athlete?
“Free time as a student-athlete can be hard to come by so time management is important. I like to attend my classes in the morning and in the afternoon I have practice. I usually get most of my studying done after practice with free time coming after that.”
What's been your favorite class here at Oregon State?
“My favorite class has been Health 312 which discusses the effects of STD's and STI's in America and worldwide. Before taking this class I had heard of these diseases, but I did not know how dangerous they were. It was interesting and at times rattling and unnerving to see how potent and dangerous STD's are.”
What are you currently studying?
“I am currently studying Exercise and Sports Science and it has been a really enjoyable experience and I have learned quite a bit from my professors and about the human body. I plan on switching my focus onto Communication as I see this as being a direction that the entire world is heading and I want to be a part of it.”
What do you plan on doing with your degree, and where do you see yourself in 10 years?
“As of now I am unsure of what I want to do with my degree I am waiting for something to really spark my interests. Ten years from now I see myself standing on a big league mound somewhere. If that does not go to plan I see myself with a self-satisfying job and a great family.”
What do you do in your free time/hobbies?
“I love to play golf. I picked it up in high school and I try to play whenever I can. I also love to hunt and fish and those are things my dad and I have done my entire life and I try to pick up a fish with my parents whenever I go back home.”
What's one thing a lot of people don't know about you?
“I have been a diehard Portland Trail Blazers fan forever and they break my heart every year. I also like to think I am a great cribbage player.”
Is there anyone on the team that you are the closet with? A best friend...
“I have made many long lasting friendships with current and old teammates. I wouldn't say that I have one best friend on the team, I would say that I have a lot of them”
If you could give one piece of advice to incoming freshmen what would it be?
“Work hard and be open to suggestions and making changes. Also, be a sponge because there is much to learn from the coaches here, and also professors in your classes and people in the community.”

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