ACU sports lost two of its most important figures in ACU baseball history last week. Wes Bishop, who played for ACU in the ’70s, died on Oct. 5 at his home in Sweetwater. Al Scott, who played in the ’60s, passed away the following day at his home in Abilene.
The two played for ACU at separate times, but both had profound impacts on bringing baseball back to ACU in 1991. The program had seen a 12-year absence from the sport since the end of the 1979 season. Scott was at the heart of the rebuilding process and a huge contributor in the construction of ACU’s Crutcher Scott Field.
“Al wanted to honor his dad and took it upon himself to help build the stadium, and that’s why it’s called Crutcher Scott Field,” head coach Britt Bonneau said. “Al took a big financial step forward for ACU as far as getting baseball back on campus.”
Bishop also helped the process of bringing ACU baseball back by starting the Nolan Ryan Celebrity Quail Hunt. The fundraiser is held in Sweetwater and was influential in the return of baseball at ACU.
“Out of that, we were able to fund four to five endowments for the baseball program for scholarships,” Bonneau said.
Bishop and Scott were also great, godly men in everyday life. Bishop had a heart for giving, especially in regards of his donations to various important causes.
“Wes was so Christ-like in everything that he did,” Bonneau said. “It wasn’t just ACU baseball that he donated his time for. He also started fundraising for the hospital in Sweetwater.”
Scott was known for attending most games, including going on road trips. Consequently, he became great friends with coach Bonneau and many of the players.
“We wouldn’t of had the program if it hadn’t of been for Al, and he has always been a friend to these players,” Bill Gilbreth, former Detroit Tigers pitcher and ACU alum, said.
Ever since its return, the program has maintained proper direction. Bishop and Scott, though they will be greatly missed, will continue to impact ACU’s baseball program for years to come.