The Staffletes: Before He Was Mr. Buehner

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The Staffletes: Before He Was Mr. Buehner

Mr. Buhner coaches his team during a timeout.

Mr. Buhner coaches his team during a timeout.

Jessica Buehner

Mr. Buhner coaches his team during a timeout.

Jessica Buehner

Jessica Buehner

Mr. Buhner coaches his team during a timeout.

Keegan Nickoson, Staff Writer and Sports Editor

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You may have seen a new face at the end of the 250 hallway. Mr. Ben Buehner is a 2018-2019 addition to the RHS family. He teaches Global Issues, Psychology, and Sociology. However, his experience on the field is just as plentiful as his experience in the classroom.

Buehner is a 2001 graduate of Valley View High School. He played baseball, basketball, and football at a very high level.

Following high school, he attended Indiana University as a walk on to play baseball in the fall of 2001.

Buehner said, “I attended Indiana as a Broadcast Journalism major. My whole childhood I always wanted to work at ESPN.”

Indiana was not the only school that had interest in Buehner. All of the schools in the Midwest Athletic Conference (D1) had made offers to him, as well as Youngstown State (D1) Cumberland and other NAIA schools in Tennessee.

Buehner was in the middle of a transition from shortstop to third base when he got to Indiana.

“I have always played third or shortstop. Nowhere else,” said Buehner

Even though he was recruited for baseball and played the sport in college, it wasn’t his sport of choice.

“Baseball was my least favorite sport. I grew up in the gym, my dad was a basketball coach, and my grandpa was a referee. It’s still my favorite sport to play, but I grew up in a football town,” said Buehner.

Buehner won an OHSAA football state title his freshman year of high school in 1997. After his senior season in 2000, Buehner was named one of the two all-Ohio wide receivers. The other player given that honor? Lebron James. Buehner also was an all-Ohio baseball and basketball player his senior year.

“I always had the conflicting idea of what I wanted to do. If I had gotten the right offer, I probably would have played basketball. But it was the Yankees’ scout who convinced me to not go down that path,” said Buehner.

Towards the end of Buehner’s junior year, a scout for the New York Yankees started tracking him. He continued to follow him through the summer and his senior season. The scout said that Buehner was the type of corner outfielder that they were looking for.

“He told me that if I performed well and ran well at the pre draft workout that they would draft and follow me,” said Buehner.

A draft and follow is when a team will draft you in a low enough round so the offer doesn’t look as enticing. That team owns your rights for the next year and they encourage you to attend a junior college so they can draft you after the next season.

“I wasn’t informed enough on the process. I was kind of all alone in making decisions,” said Buehner.

Not knowing enough forced Buehner to attend Indiana against the wishes of the Yankees. Unfortunately, a broken ankle in an intersquad scrimmage derailed Buehner’s opportunity to play professionally. After playing baseball at Indiana, Wright State, and Wilmington, Buehner decided to settle down and get more into coaching.

“I think I’m bringing a positive attitude and a willingness to learn. I’m not going to try and do things as I’ve done. I think of myself as a student of sports, I’m always trying to see how people have done things better than me,” said Buehner.

Buehner is really looking forward to being able to coach basketball and baseball here at Ross.

“I really like how everybody has a sense of community within the athletic program. I’m a big believer in success breeding success. So, the more successful a fall sports program is, the winter sports can build off that, the spring sports can build off of that too,” said Buehner.

Varsity Girls Soccer Head Coach, Mrs. Jessica Buehner, Buehner’s wife, has noticed how his time playing college ball has translated into his coaching career.

She said, “I think he has taken a lot away from the whole experience of college baseball. He has learned a lot from all of the coaches and teammates that he has had, and he has really tried to incorporate that into his coaching.”

First year Varsity Baseball Head Coach, Mr. Ben Toerner, is really looking forward to coaching with Buehner later this spring.

When asked about what Buehner can bring to the baseball program, Toerner responded with, “Energy. Every time he’s around you can really tell how much he wants to be there. That’s exactly what a good coaching staff needs. A very obvious passion for the game, the program, and an excitement to help us reach our goal.”  

Go to any varsity basketball or baseball game this season and see Buehner on the sideline or in the dugout. You can also find him in room 250 where you can ask him about his experience in college athletics and the recruiting process.