Chad Urevig has a proud athletic tradition in his family. That now includes having his name listed as a member of the St. James Athletic Hall of Fame.
His grandfather, Claude, and father, Tom, both saw success well beyond their high-school days, with his grandfather playing football professionally for the Philadelphia Eagles.
While Urevig also saw success on the gridiron, the former St. James Saint found his niche on the baseball diamond.
“I have early recollections, when I was two or three years old, of having a baseball in my hand,” said Urevig, adding his interest in the national pastime was encouraged by his dad.
By the time he was old enough, Urevig was already competing in the town’s little league program.
“I remember one game when the team my dad was coaching did not have enough players,” said Urevig, adding his dad went to the coach of the other team and asked if it would be OK for him to play even though he was not the right age. “I played and never did strike out.”
That experience catapulted Urevig’s interest in baseball, and many of his fondest memories are with a baseball glove or bat in his hand.
Urevig said St. James has had a rich baseball history, adding he played all four years of high school (1991-94) on the team. He was named to the all-conference team all four years of high school and was also named to the all-section and all-state teams during his career.
During his senior year he was listed among the top 25 baseball recruits in Minnesota, and started playing college baseball at Waldorf Junior College before transferring to Western Kentucky University, a Division 1 baseball program. During his time at Waldorf he was listed as one of the top outfield prospects in the country.
In high school he also played quarterback for the Saints, and during his junior year the team qualified for the state tournament.
Urevig graduated with eight varsity letters from St. James.
Urevig said out of high school he attracted some Major League Baseball attention from the Dodgers, but in the end an injury cut short his future in baseball. By the time he wrapped up his college career, Urevig had a .353 career batting average, with 18 home runs and 75 RBI, as a junior college player his team finished one game shy of earning a spot in the junior college World Series.
In high school, Urevig was a fixture in centerfield for four years and held down the clean-up spot in the batting order for the Saints.
“We had a lot of depth in our line-up,” said Urevig, adding the team was good but always came up just short of making it to state.
During those years as a St. James Saint, Urevig recalled strong support from the community, adding there was always a crowd at their games.
Urevig finished his degree, and started working in banking in Dallas in mortgage and finance.
Not that long into his career, Urevig made a decision and joined the United States Navy.
“I joined the military in 1999,” said Urevig, who spent the next five years serving his country.
In 2008, Urevig opted to return to his roots in the St. James area, adding he wanted to be closer to his parents and to be part of the small- town environment he appreciated so much. Having grown up on a farm, Urevig opted to get into that industry.
“Ag is in our blood,” said Urevig with a smile.
After working for others in town for a few years Urevig opted to open his own business, Tri-County Seed in St. James.
“I wanted to be part of the area and to find a way to give back to the community that gave so much to me,” said Urevig.
Urevig said whenever he has the chance he will go to watch the local baseball team, adding for him it is a real treat to be able to show support for the program.
Being selected into he St. James Athletic Hall of Fame means a lot to Urevig, adding he is humbled by his selection knowing the names of others who have also been inducted.
“I have always been proud to be a St. James Saint,” said Urevig.
Being able to see some of his own nieces and nephews involved in St. James activities just gives him one more reason to have a sense of pride in the local school district.
“I was very fortunate to have the chance to play sports and to get a good education,” said Urevig.
For Urevig being in athletics was never about the glory but about the pure enjoyment of being able to play sports that he loved.
“I lived a storybook childhood,” said Urevig, adding he does not regret anything that he has experienced in his life.
He will always be grateful for the chances he was given, and hopes in his own way to make opportunities available for others in the next generation who don the proud colors of St. James.