Movin' down the road: Former Morgan Twp. coach Dorshorst returning to the HS baseball field at Kouts
When Jason Dorshorst left baseball coaching in 2016, he and his wife Katie had two sons under the age of 4.
At the time, he left the door open for a return to the dugout down the road as the boys got older.
The road has led the former Morgan Township down Route 49 a piece to Kouts, where Dorshorst has taken over the Mustangs.
"We're in a much better position to do it than we were," Dorshorst said. "I always said in order for me to come back, the boys had to be old enough to not get hurt at practice. Now they can come and be-bop around. Grayson (11) will be in middle school, Maddox (8) is a baseball junky. Both have been around it since they were babies. If the kids were to tell me they didn't like baseball, it would be different, but they love it, which makes me want to be around it. It's just good timing."
While the family lives in Morgan Township, Jason and the boys have been involved in baseball in Kouts since Grayson began playing. He's now a part of the Mustangs travel teams that Jason helped start and Maddox is with the town youth organization.
"We're Kouts people living in Morgan," he said. "Katie teaches first grade (at Kouts). The boys go to Kouts. I'm in Kouts two, three times a week. We moved to Kouts in 2014. We just moved to Morgan for geography. We go to Valpo a ton for housing (sales). We've put a lot of time into baseball with Kouts. We have a lot of familiarity there. The Rec League has six, seven teams. Travel ball, a couple of us put our heads together and made a go of it. I'll still be around, but I'll step back a little bit and let them take reins. It's great kids and great families. It's exciting."
Dorshorst taught one more school year before focusing the last several years on the real estate business, where he and Katie are a part of Listing Leaders.
"I've had casual conversations (about coaching), but that's it," he said. "I talked about it when Jim Tucker resigned. It just wasn't the right time, Randy (Yager) wanted it, and that was fine with me. This is the only place I was going to go. It was Kouts or nothing. This is not a stepping stone thing. I don't want to go anywhere else. Now that I'm here, I plan to be here for a while. Our youngest has 10 years, so I could see doing it until he's done (with high school). I'm not teaching, but I'm in the building enough. Real estate's a flexible job. I know a lot of (the kids) anyway."
Morgan won sectional titles in 2011 and 2012 under Dorshorst, where he became known for his white framed Oakley sunglasses.
"I've got a couple new pairs, but I don't wear them as much," he said. "As I've gotten older, I've got regular glasses now."
The Cherokees were 29-27 in Porter County Conference play under Dorshorst between 2009 and 2016, according to Sandman Stats.
"I've been texting a lot of people, guys who were in the PCC when I was," he said. "(Former Hebron assistant) Sean Riley's at Boone now. Nick Sutton, my assistant, is at Washington with Randy (Roberts). 'Stein' (former Hebron coach John Steinhilber)'s at River Forest, Jarad Miller's a good friend, he's South Central principal. (Kouts') Keith (Nuest) still ran the high school summer league when I was at Morgan. It's interesting, my last year, I was second to Randy as senior member of PCC with eight years."
Kouts went 13-12 last season with a largely underclass roster.
"The group in high school now, I don't know super well," Dorshorst said. "I always had the high school kids come to middle school workouts (at Morgan), so I'll do that when we get going here. Eighth (grade) on down, I know really well. The freshman class is pretty strong. Sixth, seventh and eighth, they're all really good all the way down."
Though he's been out of the high school loop for a while, Dorshorst's continued involvement in baseball has kept him connected.
"The game's changed a little bit, but it's still the same things, throw strikes, play defense," he said. "It's more technical, the instruction they get, hitting, pitching. They break down more than when I first started. They're a lot more into data than when I got into it 15 years ago. Some of that's coming through with my oldest. I've figured out a lot along the way."
Former Morgan Township High School coach Jason Dorshorst, pictured with players from his Kouts Mustangs travel team, will return to coaching at the high school level with Kouts.