Former North Idaho College baseball coach Jack Bloxom dies at 80
Jack Bloxom was the face of North Idaho College’s baseball program for 30 years and a fixture in the region’s baseball scene.
The Coeur d’Alene man and former Cardinals skipper died Tuesday. He was 80.
Bloxom, who retired in 1997 after posting a career record of 560-539, was inducted into the NIC Athletics Hall of Fame in 2010.
“Unbelievable guy,” said Paul Manzardo, former NIC head baseball coach and Bloxom’s successor before the program disbanded in 2002.
“He’d go out of his way to teach you about the game, how to take care of the field – even how to install a screen door at your house. Just a good, hardworking man.”
NIC qualified for the NJCAA Region 18 tournament six times under Bloxom, finishing second twice.
This season before his retirement, Bloxom, who sent several of his players to Division I programs, recruited ex-Gonzaga standout and former MLB All-Star Jason Bay to NIC.
“I can’t think of a better place to work,” Bloxom told The Spokesman-Review in 1997 after announcing his retirement from NIC. “My kids have gone to school and that’s very, very important to me. I think the athletic directors I’ve worked for will vouch that they’ve had less problems with my kids than any other kids who attended here as a group as an athletic team.”
The former Sandpoint High and University of Idaho multisport athlete was named to the Sandpoint Athletics Hall of Fame in 2004.
“Anyone who knew anything about baseball in this area for about a five-decade span knew who Jack Bloxom was,” said Manzardo, the head baseball coach at Lake City High
“He was like a father and grandfather figure to many of his players.”
Bloxom’s funeral is set for Saturday at 2 p.m. at Yates Funeral Home in Coeur d’Alene.