Robbie Fairchild Celebrates a Different Kind of Opening Night
Enlarge this image toggle caption Scott Garfield/Hearst Corp Scott Garfield/Hearst Corp
On March 19, 2015, Robbie Fairchild got up early, found a good parking spot and then walked to the top of the Grandstand steps. In front of her was a large banner that read “Hogtown Superstar.”
“I figured I had the best parking spot,” Fairchild tells New Times. “But I was wrong. One of the people in my seat was an older gentleman, and he started telling me he was from New York.”
Fairchild was in Detroit, but her ticket to the Super Bowl was in a New York suburb.
“So I said, ‘Mr. Man,’ ” she says. ” ‘You know what? I’m going to be here all night, and I’m going to stay here the whole damn night.'”
That’s when she met the man who would become her life coach.
“I was already an excellent athlete,” says Fairchild, “but I wasn’t that good yet. I had the most promising career in my sights and yet I had no idea what I was capable of. I kept playing, playing, playing, even after the first tackle.”
But fair was not a natural athlete. In fact, the only person who could have told her that was Robbie Fairchild.
The pair, who got to know each other at their shared alma mater, the University of Tampa, began working together on the football field. Fairchild was, and still is, a natural athlete, not the kind of guy who is a “big-time” football player, like he likes to think. He’s a small guy, with a lot of weight around his hips. He was going to be the best athlete in his class. And he was good with people — but not with football.
“He was the class clown. I just wanted to be a part of him, and not in the sport,” Fairchild says. “I wanted to take him somewhere.”
Fairchild and Michael Schutman, her coach, knew that she was interested in baseball. So they decided to become coaches together. And so began their baseball coaching partnership.
But before they could form the partnership, Fairchild had to make sure she was going to be playing, and not in