The University of Georgia wasted no time in the search for a head coach to replace longtime Bulldogs skipper David Perno. According to a university press release, UGA has found their guy in Kent State head coach Scott Stricklin.
“We are thrilled to have Scott leading our baseball program,” said athletics director Greg McGarity. “Scott has excelled in every phase of his career as a student-athlete at Kent State, in professional baseball, as an assistant coach at Vanderbilt and Georgia Tech, and as a head coach at Kent State for the past nine years. At every step of the search process, his name was consistently mentioned as a tremendous candidate, and we are so happy to have Scott provide the leadership and direction for our program.”
Stricklin is excited about becoming the 25th head baseball coach in UGA history.
“My family and I are excited to be Georgia Bulldogs,” said Stricklin. “It’s been a dream to coach in the Southeastern Conference, and I look forward to moving my family to Athens and getting started on the recruiting trail and building on the tradition of Georgia Baseball. I feel the Georgia Bulldogs can be a power in the SEC and a national power. I want to thank Greg McGarity for giving me this opportunity. Also, I want to thank current Kent State athletic director Joel Nielsen and former athletic director Laing Kennedy for the confidence and support they showed for the Kent State baseball program over the last nine years.”
What is even more interesting is that Kent State and Stricklin recently agreed to terms on a six-year contract extension in September of 2012. At Georgia, he will earn a much more lucrative contract as well as being at the disposal of elite talent in the state of Georgia, not to mention the southeastern region of the U.S.—an area where talent seems to be head and shoulders above the rest of the country.
Stricklin has a very impressive track record as an assistant coach at Georgia Tech and more recently as the head coach at Kent State. In eight years at the helm of the Kent State baseball program, Stricklin’s résumé speaks for itself. He showcased an impressive .656 winning percentage (314-165), lead the Golden Flashes to a College World Series appearance (which is a true testament to his skills as a leader and recruiter, considering KSU is a MAC school, with all due respect), and also guided his teams to five conference tournament titles.
Many folks of the baseball world believe that Stricklin is a fine hire and will help the Georgia faithful forget about the dreaded 2013 campaign. With the addition of the 41-year old, the masses would like to think that he is the missing link that will propel the Diamond Dawgs to their first College World Series title since former head coach David Perno lead the Bulldogs to a championship as a player in 1990—a 23-year drought. Time will tell but in the meantime every Georgia Bulldogs fan should be pumped up for the 2014 campaign and what the future has in store.