Someone once said it’s the not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog. Truer words could never have been spoken about Jimmy Mitchell.
Raised in Oildale, he attended Standard Jr. High and entered North High in 1980, standing 5’3” and weighing 140 pounds. He left North stretched out at 5’8” tall and weighing all of 160 pounds Starring in football and baseball and was fortunate to play for three North High Hall of Famers, Turk Eliades, Tony Silver and Rick Harvick.
Jimmy did not go out for football as a freshman, instead electing to play basketball. But he played JV baseball
that year under coach Harvick who talked him into playing football the next year. That turned out to be a good
decision. He played JV football as a sophomore and then made his mark on the varsity the next two years.
He played running back and defensive back under coach Eliades. He was named all-City defensive back as a
junior in 1982. Then as a senior he was named the Stars’ co-MVP and all-Area Player of the Year. He received scholarship offers from several prominent D-I schools including Baylor, Oregon and Oregon State to name a few.
But baseball was his game. He started on the varsity in the middle infield for Coach Silver for three years. In 1982, the Stars won the SYL Championship and Mitchell was named “Rookie of the Year.” Then in both his junior and senior seasons he was an all-Area first team selection. In addition he was named to the All-California State team as a senior, the only one from Kern County to be selected.
After graduation from North he accepted a baseball scholarship from Cal State Northridge and played for local Arvin legend Terry Craven. As a freshman, CSUN was the only D-II team to win 40 games that year.
After leaving Northridge, Mitchell came home and enrolled at Cal State Bakersfield where he graduated with
a degree in finance in 1990. After graduation he married Gina Jones, a South High grad, and took a job with GTE
in Indiana. While in Indiana, Jimmy earned his MBA from Butler University.
Jimmy and Gina lived in Indiana for three years then were transferred to Highland Village, Texas (just outside
Dallas) to take a job with Verizon in the finance department. He’s currently employed by the Toyota Motor Corporation.
The Mitchells have three children. Daughter Taylor (23) graduated from Lamar University where she earned a
soccer scholarship and graduated with a degree in finance. She now works for Atmos Energy. Daughter Baylee (20) is a junior at Texas Tech where she is working towards her management degree. She also went to college (Abilene
Christian) on a soccer scholarship but a knee injury ended her career. Son Parker (19) turned down baseball scholarships but instead decided to attend UCLA where he is majoring in biochemistry with plans to continue on to Medical School.
He credits his family and his North High mentors, Silver, Eliades, Harvick, Curt DeRossett and Jack O’Brien plus Coach Craven at CSUN and many others for his success. They could all tell you that big things do come in small packages.