PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) – A Florida State legend was on the Panama City campus Thursday. Former Seminoles baseball coach Mike Martin Sr. spoke to faculty before the school year starts.
“Eleven” was one of the guest speakers for the school’s welcome back symposium. He gave a speech to a packed room of faculty about helping students succeed.
Martin retired from coaching earlier this year and his son Mike Martin Jr. took over as the head of the FSU baseball team.
Although he’s retired, Martin said he won’t be far from the action.
“There’s no way I’m gonna stay away. I mean I’m a Seminole whether it’s football, baseball, basketball, I’m gonna be there to watch our Seminoles play,” Martin said. “The fact that my son is the baseball coach now is not gonna do anything in regard to me because I’m gonna be way away. I’m gonna have opinions certainly, if I didn’t there would be something wrong with me.”
Martin took his final bow back in June when the Seminoles fell to Texas Tech in the College World Series. He is the winningest coach in Division I college baseball history, but he never won a national championship. Martin said even though they didn’t win it all, this was still a special way to end his career.
“The last three weeks of the season all of a sudden I’ll never forget it, I looked out there and I said ‘holy smokes it’s happening,'” Martin said. “It makes me emotional because I love Florida State and I love the game of baseball. And to see our guys have the success they deserve, they busted their fannies.”
For now, Martin is making the most of his retirement with his wife here in Panama City and he’s playing a lot of golf too.
“The golf game is wearing me out,” Martin said. “I gotta get some coaching over here and certainly I intend to do that. I love the game of golf. I’m excited to get into a real retirement mode. I haven’t been in the retirement mode yet because so much is going on, but this is a great way to start it, spending time with people in Panama City.”