The Early Bird: Cat Osterman
Cat Osterman is one of the most legendary softball players in United States history. As a two-time Olympic gold medalist in 2004 (Athens) and 2008 (Beijing), and one of the most decorated college athletes of all time, Osterman was the epitome of dominance in her sport. She credits a large part of her success to a strong work ethic and mental fortitude she developed at a young age when working out with her father.
Osterman is an Eagle athlete, one who uses extrinsic things like awards and honors in order to motivate and push herself forward, and that, paired with her strong work ethic allowed her to develop into a legend, a true titan in the world of softball.
Read more about how Osterman shaped her mindset at a young age and how she says it helped her during her playing career at Texas and for Team USA:
Development at a Young Age
They say that the early bird gets the worm, this is true in nature and also many real-life situations we deal with as people on a day-to-day basis.
Cat Osterman, one of the most dominant U.S. softball players of all time, is a perfect example of this concept.
“The mental part of my game started when I was growing up,” she’s said in the past.
Osterman is an Eagle athlete, and she credits a good majority of her work habits and mental make-up, keys to the Eagle mindset, to her upbringing as a young athlete.
She became the fourth female to ever be enshrined in the Little League Hall of Excellence, and the first to be recognized for a career in the sport of softball. Not only that, she is a former three-time NCAA National Player of the Year, a four-time All-American, and a two-time Olympic Gold Medalist.
To Osterman, much of her success can be traced back to the early stages of her pitching career, in practices she would have with her dad.
“I think the biggest thing is my dad instilled an incredible work ethic in me. There is not a day that I go out and just go through the motions. Every practice may not have a written down purpose but I know once I started throwing, as soon as a pitch feels off, I know what my purpose is and how I have to proceed in order to make that practice worthwhile,” she said in an interview on the Brian Cain Peak Performance Podcast.
The Competitive Gene
Her parents helped build the mentality that Osterman used to her advantage throughout her career. She credits her work ethic to her parents saying, “My parents. They made it clear if I was going to be doing something I better be doing it 100 percent. If I wasn’t going to give 100 percent, than they weren’t going to pay for stuff like pitching lessons. So I did. And when you love what you’re doing, it’s easy to give 100 percent.”
Not just in practice though, Osterman credits her family and childhood for the competitiveness that she became known for. “I think being competitive is just something that’s in my family.”
This work ethic and competitiveness is a trademark of most Eagle athletes, like one of the most prolific passers in NFL history, Peyton Manning and baseball phenom and two-time American League MVP, Mike Trout.
Another thing that drives the Eagle is the motivation to earn recognition and awards. While most athletes are reluctant to talk about individual awards, Osterman notes that these awards are something that push her to continuously pursue getting better for herself and her team:
The Eagle is a responsible athlete, who lets hard work and determination be their guide during their sports career.
For Cat Osterman, one of the best softball players of all time, this is a mindset she developed at a young age.