College Coaches Change Jobs

Some exciting threads in this forum as 2018's and 2019's get offered opportunities to play at the next level. 

As opportunities are evaluated, I wanted to highlight something that my boys (and me and my wife) gave very little thought to during the recruiting and committing processes.  College coaches change jobs.  It's obvious that they would...we just didn't give it much thought at the time.

My oldest son's pitching coach just called him.  The coach is leaving for another opportunity.  He recruited my son hard during the transfer process.  My son loves the guy and is a key reason my son is at this school.  They had a nice year together, but he's gone now.  My guy is bummed out on the eve of returning to campus.  Ugh.

When my youngest was at Headfirst in the Summer of 2015, he really connected with one recruiting coordinator.  That RC was gone by late Fall 2015 after my son committed to his school.  The Head Coach was gone by June 2016.  All new coaching staff when my son arrived last Fall.  It was very upsetting to my son and completely unexpected by us.

It's often said to pick a college even if baseball wasn't in the mix.  That's impossible  to do for a kid going off to play college baseball. 

And it's very difficult for a player to separate the RC and HC when evaluating schools.  Of course they'll have a huge influence on the player's perspective of a school!   But they will likely change...

Almost all of the things being evaluated when trying to select a college are pretty stable.  A school's location doesn't change.  The physical buildings of a campus change some or maybe not at all.  The baseball field and workout facilities might change a little bit.  The majors and minors offered by the school don't change too much.  The size of the student body is pretty stable.  The profile of student's admitted is pretty similar each year.  Career services is what it is.  Ditto the dining hall, student center, dorms...maybe some changes, but not too much over 4 years.

The team's roster will change every year.

And it's very likely that one or more coaches will change.  

My only caution for those going through the process is to not overly weight the coaching staff relative to all the aspects that can go into selecting a school.



Original Post

Excellent Post by BB. And something that clearly gets overlooked by players / parents during recruiting cycle.

My son experienced a similar thing. HC left summer before freshman year and RC left approx 6 months after he committed.

Fortunately, new HC was previously asst coach that was key in sons recruitment. So, everything sort of worked out

Son's school lost a volunteer assistant who had come in last year.  Great guy, played at a B1G and really helped the team with hitting/offense.  He was a big reason my son was told to come back this fall ready to fight for a position player spot in addition to pitching.  He's not sure what this change will do to that option now.  I guess he'll find out soon enough.  In most cases, losing the RC that recruited you or the HC would be a bigger issue, but hopefully losing a volunteer assistant doesn't cause him too much grief.

My son had a lot of contact with a lot of coaches during his recruiting process.  He's now a college rising junior.  I'm amazed at how many coaches we had contact with during his process that have landed somewhere else since that time.  Ironically, the HC, PC, and RC at the school he chose are all still there.

... son has had much the same experience... HC from JC left after his second year.  HC at his D2 was in his first year.  HC at his NAIA has been there a long time but broke off communications at one point during the recruiting process because he was close to making a move.  And the HC's are the most stable of the bunch - they at least usually have something resembling a salary.  Unless you are at a well funded D1 or private, the RC's and other assistants make very little and are always on the move to try to get closer to that HC spot so they can get paid.

Looking at the conferences he has played in, I'd say 2/3 of the HC's are long-timers.  It seems like support staff are either older guys with local roots who are winding down, alumni they can maybe get one or two more years out of or they are guys on the move.

 This is son's first year on the coaching side.  There have already been some real eye-opening experiences for something we both thought we knew a lot more about.  But that's for another thread.

Yep.  HC called several weeks after the NLIs were signed in November to say he was moving on.  He had been the HC for one year and at the school for 2, so we had hoped he would stick around a bit longer.  But, as in most things, life moves on and son had a very good college experience.

It's the players that have horrible coaches, and hope everyday that they leave, that I feel the most sorry for.



I understand how you all feel. My son would have been really upset if his Pcoach left before he got there. He didnt, but son would have been ok either way because his college experience was about a lot of things, not just his pitching coach, but you don't realize that until after the fact.

Volunteer coaches are unpaid assistants that have no employer benefits but do make a salary based on the camps. Their salaries range from 25k to 40k depending on the program. They are learning from their HC so they can move forward when a paid position with benefits becomes available. They cannot recruit. I know of an assistant volunteer coach whose wife works at the same university and she has the benefits. NCAA only allows 3 paid school employees, along with a baseball operations manager.

There will always be movement among coaches changing programs for various reasons, especially for those with young families. Trust me when I say that it does bother them to leave their players, but just a part of the profession that will never change.

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