Notre Dame introduces new head baseball coach Shawn Stiffler

Published: Jul. 15, 2022 at 10:30 AM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - A new era of Fighting Irish baseball began Thursday as the University of Notre Dame introduced its new head coach.

Shawn Stiffler comes over after a decade of coaching the VCU Rams and racking up over 300 career wins. During his time at VCU, Stiffler led the Rams to the NCAA Tournament in 2015, 2021, and 2022. He also led them to three Atlantic 10 Regular Season Championships in 2017, 2019, and 2021.

Stiffler is replacing former head coach Link Jarrett, who took the program to new heights and led the Irish to their third-ever College World Series trip this past season. Jarrett was hired last month by Florida State, where he played college baseball.

During his remarks, Stiffler says that stepping into those shoes at a place like this will be a tall task. But he’s ready to step up to the plate.

“I’m very aware of what this university means,” Stiffler said. “Of how prestigious it is. The tradition, the history. The—some would call it—challenges. That’s now how I see it. I see attending the greatest university in the country, getting this degree, playing in one of the best conferences in the country with elite athletes is what we’re going to sell. That is going to be our strength.

“Everything that people will look at as something that could hold us back or not get us over the top is what we will sell,” Stiffler added. “That is what we are looking for. Those are the types of likeminded people we will bring in and embrace. We will use that as opportunity, and that is what makes this place great. In my mind, this is the greatest university in the country. I am thankful to be a small part of it, and I am thankful to be your baseball coach.”

Stiffler was flanked by some returning players during his introduction. Outfielder Brooks Coetzee III said afterwards that he’s looking forward to getting to know his new coach.

“He’s well spoken,” Coetzee says. “He’s confident in what he does and he’s a player’s coach. He knows what he wants to do, and he knows a plan to do it.

“We’re just excited to keep it going to what we had last year, and that’s kind of the main goal and why we’re excited cause he says it’s not going to change a whole lot,” Coetzee added. “And we’re ready to just get out there and get to work at this point.”

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