Denney Crabaugh Death – We are depply saddened to announce the death of Denney Crabaugh, who passed away recently, this was made known through various tributes written by friends and families on social media.
Denney Crabaugh Tributes
Hard to even start to describe how much of an influence Denney Crabaugh had on the man I am today. If a life is measured by how many lives you changed for the better, I’d say Denney Crabaugh lived one of the finest you can possibly live. In an age of coaches concerned about their own bottom line or what their players can do for them now, Denney was most definitely an exception. The man would have given the shirt of his back or the last dollar he had, if it meant his players were taken care of. That’s just who he was. There was no greater passion Denney had than cultivating men, in whatever stage he found them, into leaders of their families and their community. Like his results between the lines, he was extremely successful in doing so.
Now, that’s not to say the man didn’t like to win ballgames. Denney was just about the most competitive coach I ever had the chance to play for. He had a simple belief that despite all of the emphasis on technique or mechanics, at the end of the day mental strength and willingness to work harder than anyone, triumphs technical soundness. A tenet that I feel has been an absolute pillar of my professional post-baseball career.
He loved to find creative ways to get the most out of his pitching staff. Whether it was standing in the box himself right on top of the plate (no helmet mind you) and demanding his pitcher execute inside fastballs; Or, having his pitchers wear a catchers mask to keep them more in control and consistent.
The simple fact was, for most of his tenure at OCU, the more talented team on the field was almost always the team in blue, black, and white. Denney had a keen understanding of this (although he’d never tell us), he hated with a passion complacency and any sense at all of “resting on your laurels”. Whether it was his strict class attendance policy, emphasis on throwing routine daily, or no exceptions late policy to meetings/practice (God help you if you showed up past the noon nado on a fall Saturday). No little detail was too small to be overlooked in the book of DC.
I’m deeply saddened today, not just because an amazing man, father, grandfather, husband, coach and pillar of the community- has been lost. I’m sad because the world desperately needs more people with the caliber of character Denney Crabaugh had woven in ever fiber of his being. The world this morning just doesn’t feel as wholesome and good as it was yesterday with him.
My condolences to the whole Crabaugh clan. If there is anything I can do please let me know Cody Crabaugh
P.S. pictured is one of my favorite memories of Denney. He hated the genre of rap with a passion. But, after winning our regional and advancing to the World Series. Denney threw in Ricky Parra’s rap playlist and began busting a move. – J.r. Holloway
Very sad day for the OCU baseball family as we lost a legend this morning.
While playing summer baseball in 2008 in Cape Cod, I wanted to transfer to a school that did a lot of winning that wasn’t too far from home. After one conversation and a later visit, I knew that DC and Keith were the guys I wanted to spend my junior year with. We had an incredible season that ended just short in Lewiston, but what I remember the most is how these guys treated me. Denney Crabaugh truly treated me like a son; in fact, several of the guys on the team regularly made jokes about it because DC was so good to me. I’ll never forget being on the mound for his 1,000th win.
As the leader of one of the most successful programs in history with 1,600 wins under his belt, this stat means nothing compared to the lives he impacted. DC led by example on and off the field and was dedicated to making those around him not only better ball players but also people.
Sending prayers to his family & entire OCU family for strength and comfort. Thank you for everything, DC; you will be forever missed. – Ashur Tolliver
The Friends Universtiy Baseball program would like to extend our deepest condolences to the Crabaugh family and to the Oklahoma City University Baseball program on the loss of their patriarch and head coach, Denney Crabaugh.
Coach Crabaugh **IS** NAIA baseball- and is legendary among all the coaches who always respected his knowledge, his program and his encouraging support.
Our prayers go out to everyone who is feeling the loss of this baseball great.- Friends University Baseball
Listen carefully to the eerie silence of a baseball diamond. There are no “crack of the bats”, no cheers for a clutch k w the bases juiced for the opposition, no cheers for a well executed squeeze bunt by the home team. No screams as a ball sails over the center field wall for the home team. No jeering of umpires on this day. No high fives in the duggout or in the stands on this day. THEY WILL RETURN. I promise you THEY WILL RETURN! I know this because I know the man who led all those great moments on this very field. Denney Crabaugh would have wanted it that way. And SOONER rather than later. The baseball world lost one of the best today as the man who patrolled these foul lines, dugouts, and pitchers mound at Oklahoma City University for over 3 decades lost his battle w cancer. The cheers were noticeably absent today as I strolled this field w memories and wet eyes all the while saying thanks to Coach Denney Crabaugh for making a difference in thousands of young ball players’ lives.
You see, those cheers on this day are still being heard but they’re heard on high where one of the greatest coaches in history now calls home.
If you listen closely I believe you can hear a lone cardinal tweeting a sweet song of tribute to a man now passed from this earth. It’s almost as if Denney orchestrated the melody himself. As if to say.
We’ve got work to do. Let’s get after it. God bless you Denney and the OCU Stars. – Steve Eldridge
I want to take a minute and express my gratitude and admiration for this man. Denney Crabaugh Took me in when they dropped our program at Oklahoma Christian University without question or hesitation to be a part of the OCU family￼. The mentorship and guidance this man gave me in my coaching career is unreal, but most importantly the friendship I gained with him was by far the most important thing. The level of respect I had for him cannot be put into words. Thank you DC for loving me and making me a part of something special. He is one of the most humble, caring man I have ever been privileged to be around.￼ It breaks my heart to see you leave this world, but I am comforted that you are now at peace. I love you DC and I am forever grateful to you and your beautiful family. #starsforlife #winningdoesnotsuck ￼ – Bryan Shepherd
WINNING DOESN’T SUCK!!!”
R.I.P Denney Crabaugh
There are so many things to say about this man. Husband, Father, Grandfather, Coach, Hall of Famer, the list goes on and on and he was great at every single one of them. DC brought out the best in so many people on and off the field. He would tell you his biggest accomplishment was that he was going to get you graduated in 4 years!!! I know when I heard those words, I started thinking he may have me confused with someone else. He did it, he made it happen, most important he made me believe that I could do it. Denney saw in everybody what they could not see in themselves and he brought that out of you. He made you understand that you always had so much more to give than you thought you had. He cared about everyone that walked into the building and I cant count the times I remember someone from outside the program being in his office for that special guidance. My condolences to Sue and the Crabaugh family, and want to thank all of you from the bottom of my heart for allowing us some time with him. We lost an amazing man but Heaven got a good one and I know he will continue to look down on all of us and continue to make us believe we have “More Outs Left!!!” A great husband, great father, great grandfather, great coach, great Hall Of Famer, a great leader of men, but more importantly a true friend. You will me missed greatly DC!!! – Erik Tuberville
Heartbroken at the news of Denney Crabaugh’s death today. Coach Crabaugh was remarkable in so many ways. Competitive as heck, detail-oriented, passionate about the game, his team, and his family. He truly bled blue and white and was a leader in our athletic department. So grateful for the impact that he made on my life and countless others. Love you Coach!! – Jim Abbott
RIP Coach Denney Crabaugh…you gave this kid that had more heart than talent a chance to play the game he loves and turned him into a college pitcher. This has allowed me to teach other kids what you taught me! Your legacy will not go unnoticed! You have touched so many lives and will be forever loved and revered. I was truly blessed to have you in my life. Love…10 Man…. – Matt Sharp.