Sheppard earns NCAA Coach of the Year Honors
The accolades for last season’s baseball continues to grow as head coach Rob Sheppard has been named the 2011 FieldTurf NCAA Division 1 Coach of the Year. This comes after Sheppard led the team to the Big East Championship and a berth into the NCAA Tournament.
The Big East Championship was the programs first since the 2001 season and the NCAA Tournament appearance resulted in a 1-2 record with a victory over Arizona in the opening game.
“The players underwent tremendous growth, as many freshmen are now being looked upon to lead the squad into 2012, a testament to Coach Sheppard’s confidence and influence with his group,” the statement from the FieldTurf awards said.
Along with the team accomplishments the award also looked at the individual success of Joe DiRocco in giving Sheppard the award. DiRocco was named an ABCA third-team All-American along with earning first-team All-Big East honors last season.
In addition to naming the NCAA Division 1 Coach of the Year, FieldTurf also named the MLB Team of the Year, NCAA Division 2 Coach of the Year, and NCAA Team of the Year.
The Pirates will open their season Feb. 17 against Penn State in the Big East/ Big Ten Challenge in Tampa, Fla. This coming season will be Sheppard’s eighth season leading the Hall’s baseball team.
Stephen Valenti can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org