A multi-talented athlete, playing four varsity sports at Frederick High School, while earning academic membership in the National Honor Society, James Stockman went on to be a varsity basketball player and 1953 graduate of the University of Maryland. He then returned to Frederick, playing football, basketball, and baseball with area semi-pro teams. He also took an interest in youth baseball, coaching the Babe Ruth All-Stars to three state and two runner-up championship trophies in the late 1950s. Stockman took over the American Legion team in the 1960s, winning three state championships and two runner-up region titles. He was known as a no-nonsense coach, accepting nothing less than perfection.