Jon Nourie has some advice for college students who may want to take some time off.
"It's a lot easier to get your degree when you are young and don't have any family," Nourie said. "You can still do it, but it takes a lot more work than when you were younger."
Nourie, a 2000 Indiana Baseball Coaches Association Class 4A all-star, and a 38th-round pick of the Cubs, is finishing his degree in computer engineering at Purdue Calumet. The 2000 Munster grad also works as an operator at BP in Whiting. He and his wife Roxanne have two children.
"It is a busy life, but I just keep focused on getting my degree," Nourie said. "I love what I am doing, but with my degree, I think it opens up more doors."
He said Roxanne is helping hold the door open.
"I couldn't do this without her," Nourie said. "With my schedule with work and school, she keeps everything together. She works then comes home and takes care of the boys. I can't give her enough credit."
Nourie said what he misses the most is spending a lot of time with his family.
"I see them in the morning and when I get home from classes at night, it is to say goodnight," Nourie said. "Work and school is fine, but I do miss being away from my family. I know by getting my degree in the long run it will be better.
"I am not complaining because I got a good job and a great family.
Nourie went to Western Michigan on a baseball scholarship, but redshirted his freshman year then transferred to South Suburban College, where he made NJCAA honorable mention All-America. He then went to Southeast Missouri State.
"They wanted me to develop a slider and I told them I needed to work more on control," Nourie said. "That's when I developed a bone spur in my left arm."
Nourie developed arm troubles and eventually left school. Region native and San Diego Padres scout Bill Bryk got him a tryout with the Padres and the lefty played one year (2004) of rookie ball in the Arizona League. Nourie also pitched for independent teams Gateway (Ill.) and Alexandria (La.).
He also coached baseball for Purdue Calumet's club team in 2007 and 2008.
When he pitched for the Mustangs, Munster had a tough tandem of Nourie and right-hander Jason Helbling.
"Those were great days and we won a lot of ballgames," Nourie said. "We had a good group of guys and we just loved the game."
He still plays summer ball with the Munster Braves and is a teammate of Helbling.
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