Miller time for scouting
Fan … parent … softball umpire … wrestling official … Tim Miller has worn many hats over the past 42 years when it comes to Carson Valley youth sports.
Miller is now involved with the National Scouting Report college recruiting agency doing exactly what he loves to do. And this past week he was focused on that new role during the Triple Crown Sports Nationals softball tournament 16U age group games in Gardnerville.
“I’m in this to help the local kids,” he said. “If I can help a local kid get a college scholarship, then that’s great.”
His coverage area includes Northern Nevada, not just in softball, but all sports.
“You have all those sports out there and college coaches are looking for talent,” Miller said.
He is confident the talent is available across Northern Nevada.
“I think there’s a lot of good talent,” Miller said. “Not necessarily Division I, because that is a very small percentage of athletes. I mean, you’re talking about super studs. But there’s a lot of talent here that can play for (Division) II, III. And a lot of colleges out here are looking for athletes, period.”
Miller added that he intends to hit the roadways of Northern Nevada to find those athletes.
“If I can find talent out in Ely or Elko, I’ll go to help the kids,” he said. “And, you know what gets overlooked, small schools like Eureka put out some good athletes and they don’t get any type of exposure. I’ve seen some of the wrestlers come out there that can beat any 4A or 5A (opponent) there is.”
After watching an athlete or team, Miller explained he files a report that goes into a prospect database and then the agency sends a report out to colleges.
“Coaches at schools send us a wish list of what they’re looking for and then if we have kids in that category, we’ll send that to them. Then they can select what they want from there,” Miller said, adding that National Scouting Report has existed since 1980.
Miller grew up in a hotbed of athletics in Long Beach, Calif. — his alma mater, Wilson High School, is known for having produced such Major League Baseball players as Bob Lemon, Bob Bailey, Bud Dailey, Bobby Grich, Jeff and Sean Burroughs — before he enlisted in the U.S. Army. After his discharge, he found a new home in Northern Nevada, where he worked in law enforcement 35 years before his retirement.
He was one of the leaders of a movement to set up the Carson Valley Little League charter in 1980 and later served as a Little League district administrator.
As a scout, the key is having an eye for talent, however, there is much more involved than that. Achievement in the classroom is obviously important, in addition to off-the-field activities and compatibility with teammates and coaches.
“These schools aren’t just looking at a grade point average, they’re looking to see if the kid is a good athlete, coachable, and whether they can multi-task,” Miller said. “Can they play ball and go to school? Are they involved in community activities? Are they involved in other activities?
“You’re looking at a lot of things,” he added. “The biggest thing is commitment to the game. You look at a lot of personality, to see if they have the temperament. You can tell if they’re paying attention, if they’re coachable and listen. They might be a great ballplayer, but if they can’t communicate and can’t get along with other people, they’re no good out on the field. It’s just basically good ball playing.”