Bret Baynham (’77) – Football and Baseball
While he thrived in football, Bret shined in baseball. A left handed pitcher, Bret joined the varsity as a Columbus freshman and was starting games for the Explorers by his sophomore year. During that season, the Explorers advanced to the state championship game, falling 2-1 to Tampa Catholic in the final. The next season — Bret’s junior year — he was named second team all-county.
At the end of his senior year, Bret was the recipient of Columbus’ scholar athlete award. That summer, the Cleveland Indians drafted Bret in the third round of the Major League draft ….. But he turned down their signing bonus offer to accept a scholarship to the University of South Carolina – a school that would allow Bret to play both football and baseball.
As if playing both sports at a Division 1 school wasn’t enough, Bret applied for and was accepted into the school’s pre-medical honors program. Bret spent two years at South Carolina shuffling back and forth from football to baseball and back to football again — often on the same day. ….. But an injury to his non-throwing shoulder during his sophomore season caused Bret to leave football and concentrate solely on baseball. He compiled a 24-4 career record at South Carolina and was an integral part of South Carolina’s berth in the College World Series in 1981.