Field captures Cap Timm’s legacy

Mark Pawlak

More than 100 years were packed into Cap Timm Field for the final home series in the history of ISU baseball.

Never again will Cyclone fans see a Cyclone infielder blowing a bubble with his chewing gum while throwing a batter out at first, as ISU player Rob Conway did in the last series at Cap Timm Field.

Fans in attendance will never again be able to hear the “ting” sound of Cyclone batters connecting their aluminum bat to an opponent’s pitch.

And perhaps most importantly, Cyclone baseball may never again be played at a field named for a ISU sports legend Cap Timm.

L.C. “Cap” Timm was a professor of education in the Physical Education department and coached the Cyclone baseball program from 1938 to 1974 with the exception of four years in which he served in the military. Along with serving as head baseball coach, Timm worked as a football assistant for 21 years and as a basketball assistant for 12 years.

In 1970, what would later be named Cap Timm Field was opened. That year the Cyclones made their second and what would be their last appearance in the College World Series, nabbing a fifth place finish.

One of the players on that team was David Erusha. Erusha, who wore the cardinal and gold from 1970 to 1973, was one of the many former players who were in town to witness the last games at Cap Timm Field.

Erusha said that it was a lot of fun in those days and that he still keeps in contact with a lot of players from his old playing days.

“We had quite a few characters,” Erusha said. “Cap let us be characters back in those days. He didn’t have a real tight leash. We all showed up and played good ball.”

Robert Dappen played for Timm from 1938 to 1942, and although he didn’t have a chance to play at Cap Timm Field, he said he has a lot of fond memories.

“The biggest memory I remember is how cold it was,” Dappen said. “We were out on the North field. Out there the wind would come off the cemetery down west of the Armory. Oh, it was cold.”

Dappen said that Timm was someone he deeply respected.

“Cap was a wonderful man,” he said. “He was an educated coach. He gave lectures, but there were no notes involved.”

If someone read out of the rulebook, “Cap didn’t like that. He wanted it right off your tongue,” Dappen said. “You had to have it memorized.”

Fighting back tears, Dappen said Timm only had only one drawback.

“He sometimes would stay with a pitcher a little too long when he should be relieved. That’s the only fault I ever saw in him,” he said. “On the field he treated everybody as a gentleman.”

Dappen said that if Timm would have been around to see the program ending today, “he would go crazy.”

“He built all this,” he said. “He was the groundskeeper. He was everything.”