New additions to BC add experience

Mohamed Bafakih, Multimedia/Sports Editor

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The athletics department here at Bakersfield College has filled two much-needed positions. Athletic Director Sandi Taylor will be accompanied by Associate Athletic Director Keith Ford to oversee all athletic-related duties.

Joining Ford in his first year at BC is strength and conditioning coach Zack Peters.

“The process is rigorous for anybody who gets a full-time job here,” said Taylor. “Keith [Ford] brings a lot of game management experience having been in a number of different university settings – plus Major League Baseball – and Zack [Peters] brings great experience, knowledge and enthusiasm.”

Keith Ford: The experience that Taylor spoke of in regards to Ford doesn’t need much explanation as his track record backs it up. Born and raised in Buffalo, N.Y., Ford’s 23 years of experience in athletics range from ticketing and marketing all the way to community relations and gameday management throughout many different levels. Ford had a chance to work with his hometown teams, the Buffalo Bills (gameday management) and Buffalo Sabres (ticketing), while also looking for ways to branch out.

“I learned in the business I had to move a lot and take a lot of chances,” Ford said.

Ford has lived in Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, Texas, Ohio, back-and-forth to Buffalo, and now finally back in California for the second time.

For Ford, his wife, and their son Brody, who just celebrated his 10th birthday, Bakersfield is starting to feel like home.

Brody has lived in three different states over the past nine years with his parents and while the battle of having high-functioning autism has forced his mother to be a stay-at-home wife over the years doesn’t trigger the current change.

“She [Ford’s wife] loves it here, so when we had the opportunity to come back out, she was like ‘yeah, we’re going!’ Ford also added how even if he was homeless, his wife still would have been on board to relocate back to California where they lived when Ford worked with the minor league Triple-A baseball team, the Fresno Grizzlies.

Ford was last with CSUB as a senior assistant athletics director for Internal Operations for four years and prior to that at the University of Akron for six years.

The tradition here at BC eased the process for Ford to take advantage of this opening as well as the vision Renegade athletics has.

“At the end of the day, really, we’re here for our students and student-athletes and to give them the best experience they can get and hopefully help them get their Associate’s Degree and move on,” Ford added.

Zack Peters: Along with the addition of the new state-of-the-art weight room – better known as the Performance Enhancement Center – comes a new strength and conditioning coach. Zack Peters will be in control, and he’ll look to elevate both students and student-athletes to their utmost potential.

Peters, a Shafter native and Shafter High School graduate, also attended Bakersfield College before heading to Tabor College in Hillsboro, Kansas, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in physical education.

“It’s an exciting opportunity,” Peters said.

As a newlywed, Peters is enjoying his new position and is hopeful about the progress and atmosphere he can create with his knowledge, but it comes with a hefty time commitment. Peters’ schedule starts as early as 6 a.m. and ends around 8 p.m. as he gets a wide range of students.

“It’s hectic, but it’s something I enjoy,” Peters added.

The Performance Enhancement Center is open for all BC students who are enrolled in the strength and conditioning curriculum instructed by Peters while he also provides student-athletes with proper training.

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