UNC Asheville has hired Tom Smith to replace Willie Stewart as its head coach. Smith spent the last two years as a Bulldogs assistant under Willie Stewart, who resigned in May. Smith spent 28 years as the head coach at Asheville’s powerhouse Roberson High before joining the UNCA staff as a volunteer in 2008, then moving into an assistant job in 2009.
"Tom Smith is a proven leader with tremendous desire who will direct our baseball program forward,” director of athletics Janet R. Cone said. “He has the knowledge of the game of baseball and is a proven recruiter.
“We are confident that Tom Smith will get the job done with our baseball program in the classroom and the community. We are equally as confident he will lead our program to being just as competitive on the field."
During his tenure at Roberson, Smith had 20 players drafted, including future big leaguers Darren Holmes, Chris Narveson and Cameron Maybin. Now he’ll take on the challenge of turning UNCA into a Southern Conference power.
"It is very exciting to be a part of a school that is so good academically and has an athletic department with so many outstanding coached," Smith said. "We are looking forward to building the UNC Asheville baseball program."
In other coaching news, Pepperdine’s Steve Rodriguez confirmed that he has been contacted by Washington regarding the Huskies’ vacant head coaching job, but he seems unlikely to leave Malibu.
"Like I told the people here at Pepperdine, I’m pretty happy here, and the chances of me leaving are not very good," Rodriguez said. "But when a university is willing to dump the kind of money they are into facilities and possibly a new coach, it will be interesting. They were very persistent and kind, but I told them I won’t waste a lot of time and effort if this is not going to work. I told them the chances of this happening are pretty slim."
The scuttlebutt in the coaching community suggests that other names on Washington’s wish list include Gonzaga’s Mark Machtolf, Hawaii’s Mike Trapasso and San Diego’s Rich Hill. Don’t expect Machtolf and Hill to leave their strong West Coast Conference coaching jobs, but Trapasso could be a fit. Trapasso received a one-year contract rollover, but it stands to reason that he could be ready to move on after the Rainbows failed to receive an NCAA tournament bid out of the one-bid Western Athletic Conference in 2009. The Rainbows started fast and faded down the stretch, but it’s become pretty clear that WAC teams have very little shot at an at-large bid if they fail to win the conference tournament. There is simply more to work with at Washington.
Comments will be monitored prior to being added to the site. Comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be rejected. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed.
We have chosen to open up commenting to everyone, so comment away! We want to hear from each and every one of you! Leave a comment.
About This Blog
Syndicate This Blog
Search This Blog