TALLAHASSEE, Fl. (WTXL) - There's a saying from one of the greatest baseball movies ever made - "heroes get remembered, but legends never die." Movie or not, that line epitomizes Florida State head baseball coach Mike Martin. Eleven closed out the regular season home schedule with a win over Richmond Sunday, and the longtime head coach is a hero to so many - the athletes he's coached, the fans that watched the last four decades, and he's a legend in his own right.
"Jim called Mike by his number, Eleven," someone reflected at Martin's roast on Saturday night. "The rest is history."
A history decorated by more than 2000 wins. Conference Championships. Trips to Omaha. On Sunday, Florida State baseball coach Mike Martin walked off the very field that shares his name - for the last time.
"The number has to be close to 50 that came up to me and hugged my neck and said 'I love you, 11,'" he said Sunday. "If that's corny, it's not corny to me. I love those guys."
Those guys are what Martin has always been about.
"This is something that, for me and for my family and friends that came after me, it was all because of you," said Luis Alicea, who played at Florida State in the mid-80's. You opened up the doors for that."
Generations of athletes are part of the history and helped to shape the legend. Mike Martin helped make Florida State what it is today.
"The values and characteristics that make up 11 are not found in any coaching manual," said a representative from Jostens. "You can't just pick them up at any clinic or coaching convention. They are God given gifts."
Gifts that have forever molded history.