James “Jimbo” Pernetti didn’t plan on moving to Texas.
But the 2013 Ceres High School grad couldn’t pass up the job opportunity with EXOS.
Pernetti was hired as a performance consultant/athletic services coordinator for the Phoenix-based company in February of 2020.
EXOS, which employs more than 4,200 team members at over 600 sites worldwide, specializes in physical training, sports performance and nutrition. Employees develop personalized game plans for athletes at any point in their career, from college tryouts to professional championships to retirement.
“I love the company,” said Pernetti, 25. The bulk of what we do is work with professional athletes. At night, we run a youth and high school program. It’s a lot of fun working here. The facilities are unlike anything around Ceres. They have all kinds of different equipment. It’s cutting edge and expensive.”
Pernetti works Monday through Friday, from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the EXOS performance training center in Frisco.
“It’s more of a managerial role,” he said. “I got thrown into everything. I do recruiting, training and business stuff. My college teammates are a little jealous I get to work with guys like Aaron Judge (New York Yankees), Trevor Story (Colorado Rockies), Odell Beckham (New York Giants) and DK Metcalf (Seattle Seahawks). At first, I was a little star-struck. Then you talk with them and they’re people like everyone else. The fame thing wears off.”
EXOS helps prepare football players for the NFL Draft. The eight-week program gets underway in January.
“We’re getting ready to run our pre-combine workouts,” Pernetti said. “A couple years ago, we had DK Metcalf here.”
Pernetti moved to Texas before the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It’s been an adventure,” he said. “We had to shut down a couple times. We do a good job of keeping everything clean and people away from each other. We have to make sure everyone is safe. Some people are a little hesitant to come in because they don’t want to train with masks on.”
Pernetti earned a bachelor’s degree in exercise physiology and a master’s degree in biomechanics from Chico State in 2020 and 2018, respectively.
Pernetti was a kinesiology instructor at his alma mater, from June 2018 to February 2020.
He would like to teach anatomy and/or physiology classes at a community college in Texas in the near future.
“I was thinking about moving a little closer to Dallas so I could teach some junior college classes,” said Pernetti, who lives in Frisco. “I’m going to try to coach some baseball out there, too. I’ll get gratification getting people to different places and seeing them succeed.”
“I really like Texas,” he added. “The people are nice. I have some family in Houston. I can drive down there and visit them if I want. The weather is crazy. It’s humid. The thunderstorms are unlike anything I’ve seen before.”
Pernetti enjoyed success-filled baseball careers at Chico State, Merced College and Ceres High.
Pernetti and Chico State accomplished a lot during the 2017 campaign.
Jimbo’s play on the field and dedication in the classroom earned him special recognition.
A standout senior first baseman, Pernetti was selected to the American Baseball Coaches Association/Rawlings Gold Glove Team.
He was the top Division-II defender at his position.
Pernetti had a fielding percentage of .998, committing just one error in 441 chances.
Jimbo earned CCAA honorable-mention accolades as well.
He posted a batting average of .289 with seven homers, one triple, 13 doubles, 43 RBIs, 30 runs and six stolen bases in 52 games.
Pernetti received CCAA All-Academic honors for the second time.
The Wildcats (45-11, 34-4) posted the best winning percentage in the history of the CCAA while capturing the conference’s regular-season and tournament titles for the first time since 2000.
Chico State defeated UC San Diego 12-5 in the winner-take-all CCAA Tournament championship game at the Banner Island Ballpark in Stockton. Pernetti collected one homer, one double, one single, two RBIs and three runs.
Chico State set new program records for fielding percentage (.983), stolen bases (111) and sacrifice hits ((82).
The Wildcats’ .804 winning percentage and 45 wins rank fourth and sixth, respectively, in team history.
Chico State also amassed a near-perfect 25-1 record at home.
The Wildcats finished eighth in the NCAA Division-II rankings.
Chico State’s season came to an abrupt end at the West Regional.
The heavily-favored Wildcats went 0-2.
Chico State never recovered after dropping its first game, 8-7, to sixth-seeded Cal Poly Pomona.
Pernetti singled and knocked in two runs.
He batted 2-for-4 with one home run, two RBIs and one run during his final game with the Wildcats. His two-run homer cut the deficit to 12-2 in the seventh inning.
Pernetti earned a partial scholarship to Chico State following a productive two-year career with Merced College.
Jimbo put up impressive offensive numbers while guiding the tradition-rich Blue Devils to a 23-15 overall record, NorCal Regional playoff berth and runner-up finish in the Central Valley Conference (16-8) in 2015.
Pernetti batted .643 (18-for-28) with two homers, two triples, two doubles, 10 RBIs and 11 runs during a historic 10-day stretch at the plate.
He tied a program record for hits in a single game when he finished 6-for-6 with one triple, one double, four singles, three RBIs and three runs in a 19-4 victory over West Hills Coalinga.
Jimbo batted .378 with three homers, two triples, seven doubles, 28 RBIs and 32 runs in 32 total games.
Pernetti was voted to the California Community College Baseball Coaches Association (CCCBCA) All-Northern California Team.
He earned first-team, all-Central Valley Conference honors.
He was also a CCCBCA Academic All-State selection. He had a cumulative grade-point average of 3.67.
Pernetti led Ceres High to a 20-7-1 overall record, Sac-Joaquin Section Division-IV playoff berth and second-placing showing in the Western Athletic Conference (10-2) in 2013. Jimbo was named to the WAC First Team.
He was voted WAC MVP his junior year. Pernetti was voted 2012 Bulldog Male Athlete of the Year.
Jimbo garnered first-team, all-league recognition as a sophomore.
Pernetti’s baseball career spanned 17 years.
“I have a passion for baseball,” he said. “You fall in love with the sport at an early age and I don’t think it ever leaves you.”