Nov. 3, 2012

Paul Keyes succumbs to cancer

Sean Ryan: Remembering a Friend

Remembering Paul Keyes


By Phil Stanton Co-Founder



Coach Keyes, Keydog, Paul. However you knew him, Paul Keyes was unique.


I was fortunate to interact with Coach Keyes in multiple ways. I got to know him as a competitor when I was the Sports Information Director at the University of Richmond. Coach Keyes was as competitive as anyone on the field during a game, but was extremely amicable before and after the contests. He loved to talk baseball, whether it was with his own staff, visiting staffs, umpires, scouts, members of the media.


I worked with Coach Keyes while Director of Athletic Communications at VCU. It was great to watch him on a daily basis. But he treated me the same as he had when I was with the enemy, the Spiders.


In my role with, Coach Keyes was a valuable resource and a great sounding board, someone terrific to talk with about college baseball. He had his hand on the pulse of the sport not only on a local and regional level, but on a national level as well. I always thought Coach Keyes should have been on the NCAA Division I Baseball Committee. He would have done a thorough and accurate job of selecting the at-large teams for the NCAA Tournament. He knew if Pepperdine was more worthy of a bid than Georgia Southern. Coach Keyes gave us excellent suggestions on items to put on the site, including the Open Dates pages, where coaches could look to complete future schedules and attempt to find replacement games after rainouts.


Coach Keyes was a very competitive person. He obviously wanted to win in baseball and he loved trivia. Coach Keyes was very good on sports trivia, including his beloved New England Patriots, and the best I’ve known on uniform numbers of professional athletes. He also enjoyed movie and music trivia, especially a couple of his favorites, James Bond and Aerosmith.


Along with his love of VCU Baseball, Coach Keyes loved CAA baseball. He enjoyed matching wits with longtime head coaches Ronnie Atkins of Richmond, Billy Brown of George Mason and Mark Scalf of UNC Wilmington, among others. Coach Keyes always looked forward to the CAA Tournament, talking baseball with the other participants while trying to win a conference title. And he enjoyed conversing with the veteran baseball SIDs: Carol Hudson at Old Dominion, Curt Dudley at James Madison, Ben Trittipoe at George Mason, Tom Riordan at UNC Wilmington, among others.


As much as he loved baseball, Coach Keyes loved his family so much more. He had nothing but great things to say about his wife, Trish. He was very proud of his kids and was elated to see them at VCU games. Coach Keyes was especially excited when his parents were able to see his Rams play.


Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Keyes family, as well as the VCU Baseball family.


Rest in peace, Coach Keyes.


(photos courtesy of VCU Media Relations Office)